DePaul’s Student Innovation Expo

The behind of a person's head is in view as the picture includes Sienna talking while holding a white plastic object.

Every year the Coleman Entrepreneurship Center hosts a Student Innovation Expo, which is an expo style event where students can pitch their business ideas. This is a really fun thing to try if you are developing an idea because it can be still in a very raw form, no need to have prototypes or a whole business plan. To apply, you must fill out an application detailing your business idea. Then wait to find out if you are chosen. All business ideas that get accepted come with a $1,000 scholarship!

This year I applied and got chosen! As an entrepreneur student this was really exciting as I have a lot of ideas floating around my head. I chose one that I have been working on a little between classes. My idea is a new way to design slow feed pet bowls. The expo took place in the Coleman Center, which is located at DePaul Center in the Loop Campus. It was super exciting! 

Sienna, a college student, dressed up in a pink,white and black striped blazer standing at a table smiling. The table has a few flyers and a poster is behind her.
A poster hanging with the words “Popit Dog Bowl” in bold with a picture of a dog on it. The table has a flier and little paper dog bones with a QR code on it.

Each business idea got a table, poster, and anything else you wanted to bring in. I had a prototype, a couple pictures and a feedback form. The great thing about doing the expo is it allows you to get feedback. This is so crucial when trying to run with a business idea. People brought things up to me that I hadn’t considered yet. I definitely plan to take these things into account before moving forward. 

It is also a great place to practice pitching and talking to others. As someone who is a little shy at times, doing these things helps push me out of my comfort zone. It’s nice because people are genuinely interested in you and what you’re talking about. Also as someone who hopes to one day have their own business, I need to practice pitching my ideas and this event was a great practice round. 

A group of college students all holding up their certificates for being apart of the Student Innovation Expo and smiling.

I highly recommend checking out the Student Innovation Expo next year, and I’m not just saying that because I was in it. It is such a fun event and lets you see some really awesome business ideas. You never know which ones will be the next big thing. It is a great way to expand your network and take advantage of what DePaul has to offer.


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