Hatchlings have high hopes


Investment money is hanging on the line for Jacob Clark and seven other Bowling Green State University
students who will be presenting business ideas to alumni investors during the Hatch on Thursday.
With a real world wrench in the works — not a business school simulation — Clark did drill exercises over
the weekend leading into this competition week.
“I know drill is this weekend, but I want to be close to memorization,” Clark said, referring to his
pitch to investors.
Student startup businesses have received more than $500,000 in equity investments during the six years
that the Hatch has been running. It will be streamed across the internet to Hatch Watch parties across
the United States and to several other countries.
The Hatchling name — given to each of the would-be business owner students — is more than typically apt
for Clark. An avid duck hunter, Clark’s retractable duck decoy weight, which he has named the Decoil, is
a potential retail product.
Like all the Hatchlings, Clark has met with a mentor weekly to prep for the big day. Clark feels lucky
that his mentor is local. He can go into meetings with Gary Dible at his Biggby Coffee franchise on East
Wooster Street in Bowling Green. Some of the Hatchlings have never met their mentors, except through
phone and video conferences.
They have worked on market research, the sales pitch and a computer slide presentation with moving
graphics of a duck decoy with the Decoil in action.
There’s also a working prototype. It looks like an egg that attaches to the bottom of the decoy and
retracts the decoy anchor with the touch of a button.
“It’s a working piece that proves the concept,” Clark said.
The Decoil is meant to shorten time deploying and retrieving decoys, allowing waterfowl hunters more time
in the field and less time untangling and retrieving decoys from the water.
Clark is from London, Ohio, is a senior in the College of Education and Human Development majoring in
tourism, leisure, and event planning with a minor in entrepreneurship through the College of Business.
In addition to being a student, Clark is also in the Army National Guard. He is expecting to go to
Serbia for a week of training in June.
The other Hatchlings have also been putting in their time for the contest, which is based on the
television show “Shark Tank.”
Blade Frisch, Toledo, has created a mobile communication-assistance app called Spoken.
The app helps people with verbal deficiencies communicate effectively through a simple interface and a
customizable experience.
Frisch is a graduate student pursuing a dual master’s in special education and computer science. He
earned dual undergraduate degrees in music education and computer science education at BGSU.
“It’s meant for people who have the ability to use verbal speech, but may have a difficulty, such as
cerebral palsy, a stroke or autism, anything that causes you to have difficulty with verbal speech,”
Frisch said.
His work as a caretaker with an individual with severe autism led to the both his educational direction
and the product.
Frisch has been meeting with his mentor remotely, but doesn’t feel it’s hurt his chances for winning an
investment. He’s been working on the product for over two years, with four prototypes at work in
classrooms for almost a year. He said it hasn’t changed during the Hatch process, but his business model
In a completely different direction, there’s Savannah Hinde, of Maumee, with Esther & Light – an
online community to support young women in ministry. She is a junior with a double major in political
science and an individualized planned program.
This summer, Hinde started an online business selling Christian T-shirts. She plans to take this concept
and use it to build an online community that supports young women in ministry while selling apparel that
is designed through crowdsourcing.
She believes that a business plan in which women are listened to has the ability to change the world.
Hinde’s business plan also changed during the Hatch development process. All of her T-shirts are now her
own designs. Part of the business model includes putting together a grant for students with unpaid
internships in ministry.
Her mentor is Bob Venzel, owner of Venzel Communications in Perrysburg.
“They’ve made me think more entrepreneurially and and think of new ways to do business,” Hinde said.
The other Hatchlings are:
• Laura Dworning, Leroy, with the Sevas, a diabetes bracelet for kids.
Dworning is a senior dietetics major with five years of experience studying nutrition and dietetics. She
will be graduating with a bachelor of science in dietetics in May.
Her idea is to develop a product exclusively for children with Type 1 diabetes. Her device is a bracelet
with an LED screen that will sync via Bluetooth to the child’s “site,” which is usually located on their
arm. “Site” is a device that most Type 1 diabetes patients wear, which has a needle inserted into the
skin and takes accurate blood sugar readings for seven days before having to be replaced. The site takes
accurate blood sugar readings and sends easily understandable signals to the bracelet.
• Philip Forrest, Cleveland, developed Split-Pax, a backpacking rig designed for comfort.
He is a junior specializing in business management with a minor in military science.
Split-Pax is a backpacking rig that redistributes pack weight between the front and back of the body,
designed to promote proper posture and reduce back pain and fatigue. It also provides easy access to
trail-essential items such as water, snacks, electronics and rain gear. Split-Pax will allow for a more
comfortable and pleasant hiking experience in the great outdoors, whether for a day hike or a
long-distance thru-hike.
• Michael Johnston, Elida, developed Set-N-Swivel, a bedside mobile viewing device.
He is a freshman in the College of Arts and Sciences studying biology and computer science.
Set-N-Swivel is an electronic device holder suitable for tablets, smartphones and e-readers. It adheres
to a bedside wall and swings out for easy, comfortable and hands-free device viewing. When users are
finished viewing the electronic device, Set-N-Swivel returns flush with the wall and stores the device
safely and securely.
• Ramsha Rashid, Monclova, developed ToyBox. She is a senior specializing in management in the College of
It is an online website where parents can rent bundles of toys based on their preferences and their kids’
interests. Parents can give their kids the toys they want to play with at any given age per their wish
list. This will save money and the space taken up by all the old toys collected over the years.
• Aubri Reiniche’s business idea is Custom Kids Stories, which customizing children’s stories.
The Pettisville sophomore is studying inclusive early childhood education in the College of Education and
Human Development.
Her idea is an e-commerce business that provides children with an opportunity to get excited about
reading. Children and their parents can go online to Reiniche’s website and complete a form that
contains a series of questions relating to a story. What they write on the questionnaire will transform
into a story that is customized to that child.

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