Handy Hand takes the Powerplay Young Entrepreneur of the Year award at SFU

A homemade hand extender took the top award at Powerplay Pitch, an elementary school entrepreneurship competition held recently at SFU Surrey.

The event is a collaboration between Powerplay Strategies, the Charles and Eve Chang Foundation, and SFU's Coast Capital Savings Venture Connection®.

The competition also serves as the final chapter of PowerPlay Young Entrepreneurs®, a curriculum-based program that cultivates an entrepreneurial mindset in Grades 4-7 classrooms. Nearly 2,000 Surrey students were involved in the program this spring.

The best 27 innovations were showcased at the inaugural Powerplay Pitch hosted by Coast Capital Savings Venture Connection. Among them, highlighted crochet critters, flip flops, portable desk basketball hoops, and more.

“At SFU we are proud of our strong focus on innovation,” says Janice OBriain, associate director of Coast Capital Savings Venture Connection. “We believe that it is never too early to be an entrepreneur. We welcomed the chance to collaborate with PowerPlay Strategies and help our youth stretch their capabilities—and embrace entrepreneurship as a viable career path.”

Among jury members were Sarah Lubik, SFU’s director of entrepreneurship, and Steve Dooley, SFU Surrey executive director.

Student Aodhan Braun's Handy Hand, which helps users to access out-of-reach objects, took the overall title and a $250 gift certificate. It was also voted the most creative product.

Others who received recognition include student Brock Vedhuis and his venture, Yardzee, featuring large wooden dice for a giant game of Yahtzee, and Erica Nomura for Mochi Mania, featuring adorable, multipurpose stuffies.