Students take ideas into dragons den
Two Matamata College teams had their small businesses put under fire in a Dragon’s Den.
The Dragon’s Den, based on the television show Shark Tank, is part of the Lion Foundation Young Enterprise Scheme (YES).
It is an experiential programme where students set up and run a real business. Each YES company creates their own product or service and brings this to market.
The Matamata College teams involved were The LJPD Smart System, run by Lathum Douglas, Jess Willam, Paige Kennedy, and D’artagnan Lewis, and SWOT (Study With Our Techniques) produced by Brianne Erb, Tailah Bradnock, Richa Nand, Zane Mostert.
The LJPD system is a smart expense card students can use for school-related costs such as at the canteen, uniform room and reception.
Lathum Douglas, chief executive of LJPD Smart System, said although the card would be used by students, its target market was parents.
‘‘The LJPD smart system is useful for day-to-day payments in the school and we hope parents find it as a helping hand to help establish where final payments are being made.’’
The project is being financially sponsored by Matamata businesses Plumbco, Robert Harris and Candy Gillespie, who Douglas said were all impressed with the concept.
It also received a recommendation from Matamata-Piako mayor Jan Barnes.
Douglas said the plan going forward is to take the idea to the school board for its endorsement and then continue with research and development, such as linking the card with terminals, coded to each individual high school.
SWOT is a study support app designed to help increase pass rates in NCEA exams.
Its chief executive Tailah Bradnock says the group came up with the idea after discovering that the pass rate for NCEA could be improved.
‘‘We noticed that NCEA one, two, and three passing rate wasn’t as good as it could be.
‘‘We found it difficult to study last year and we hope to help others too.
‘‘It’s a way of making studying easier, so hopefully students will pass easier.’’
Bradnock says the app will provide past years’ exam links and example answers so students can see an outline of what the standard requires.
It also includes a collaboration space where students can engage in discussion with other students and faculty, and teachers can pose questions to challenge students.
It is being financially sponsored by sole trader Carbon Technology.
Bradnock says the group has a developer and now just need to encourage students and teachers to engage with it.
She says the group has enjoyed working together and embraced the challenges the project has brought forward.
‘‘It’s exciting to be in the middle of developing an app that thousands of students could use.
‘‘We are hoping all high schools will be using it.
‘‘If we don’t place, the experience has been worth it,’’ Bradnock said.
Brianne Erb, Tailah Bradnock, Richa Nand and Zane Mostert have designed the SWOT study app to help raise NCEA pass levels for the YES programme.