GRCC student wins 2nd place in MWest Challenge

Congratulations to Mark Tamminga, who won second place in the MWest Challenge student venture competition!

Tamminga pitched his idea for Mythos Dice, a startup to create bespoke dice that can be designed by Dungeons and Dragons players using an interactive webpage. Tamminga won $2,500 for his second-place presentation for a business that would provide high-quality personalized dice for game enthusiasts.

Through MWest Challenge, students can develop and grow new ventures based on their own ideas. This year, teams from nine West Michigan colleges and universities competed for $12,000. The competition also includes opportunities for students to network with investors.

“The MWest Challenge, especially the Final Pitch, is a taste of the real world for anyone going into business,” Tamminga said. “Being able to present in front of investors in a way that is clear and persuasive is a core aspect of being successful in the professional world. This challenge is an opportunity to stand out for any student with the drive to step outside of their comfort zone.

“Personally, the MWest Challenge gave me valuable experience applying the lessons from the business courses I’ve taken over the last two years. It’s also proven to me, yet again, that GRCC students are more than capable of competing with any other college or university at the highest level. When I transfer to GVSU next semester, I’ll be able to go in confidently, knowing that I’m well-prepared for making the leap to a four-year university.”

GRCC student Hunter Schumaker also presented in the finalist round of eight with Eco-Blade Razors. Schumaker got involved in the competition through classes with Professor Felix Pereiro, head of the Business Department. Even though Schumaker did not win a prize this year, he still thought it was a valuable experience.

“GRCC helped provide this opportunity,” Schumaker said. “I appreciate Professor Pereiro for all the help I received from him over the many months preparing for this event. It was an incredible experience.”

Three other GRCC students competed this year in the showcase idea pitch round:

  • Anders Rottschafer, Phat Nguyen and Austin Edger with Center for Homelessness Research, a startup that collects financial data from the major organizations focused on homelessness.
  • Amir Ukubakeder, Elijah Dixon, Elly Delgado and Nathan Coppock, with Sneaker Fit, an app that shows a person what the shoe would look like on their feet
  • Andrew Glaza, with Parent Prep, an app that offers insights and information that new parents need to know and helps them make connections with other parents of children ages newborn to 2 years.

GRCC was scheduled to host this year’s MWest Challenge before the competition moved completely online because of COVID-19.

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