Twice as Nice: Two Badger teams named finalists at e-Fest 2021

By JP Bertinet, UW-Madison School of Business

The University of St. Thomas Schultze School of Entrepreneurship-sponsored E-Fest returned this past spring as a stage to elevate some of the most promising ventures being developed on college campuses. This year marked E-Fest’s fifth and its first all-virtual format; unlike in previous years, students did not congregate on St. Thomas’ campus but instead presented via video call. As in past years, the student competition was attended by distinguished undergraduate entrepreneurs from around the country who shared their original business plans. After E-Fest organizers reviewed nearly 100 submissions from 59 colleges and universities across the US, several entrepreneurial Badgers were again recognized as top finishers.

One of those students is Marissa Harkness, a Biomedical Engineering student at UW-Madison who, along with her sister, developed a novel way to help teach children to orally ingest pills. Pill Skills seeks to remove the anxiety that afflicts so many who struggle to swallow pills. The Harkness sisters’ business solution is one that empowers users with a systemized approach that includes practice pills, starting small and gradually working up to standard tablet-sized dosages. Judges believed in the potential for Marissa’s venture, too, placing them second in their competitive block and awarding them $2,500 dollars. Read more …