Stu­dents take ideas into dragons den

Matamata Chronicle - - Your Paper, Your Place - REXINE HAWES

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.

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