Partners Demetric Bush and Ashunti Garner brought home the grand prize of $10,000 worth of startup capital and business services with their business LOUD after 17 groups of students hailing from The Howard School, Brainerd High School and Tyner Academy participated in the LAUNCH competition.
Pitched as a non-profit organization, LOUD will offer mobile art classes for teens to openly express themselves and spread art throughout the community. Demetric and Ashunti hope to address and solve the issue of art lacking in the inner city, and to provide a safe environment for individuals to express themselves. Types of art instruction that will be provided will be painting, clay sculpture, silk screening and natural crafts.
Tyner Acacemy students Johnny Richie and DaMika Cox were first runners up with their natural juice company, Exquisite. The second runners up were Porsha Paris, Jakaira Walker, Deniqua Lewis, Charne Turner and Diamond Wells with High 5 Fashions, a clothing spirit store for Brainerd High School.
Passion Prizes of $500 were also awarded to two other groups. Judge Kristina Montague awarded Porchia Turner with her business Edu-Nations, from The Jump Fund. T.C.L.I. (Talented Children Learning Importance), comprised of students TreVieon Spence, Cedric Fifer, LaMaurea Summerville and Isaiah McIntosh, were given a Passion Prize courtesy of the Chattanooga Renaissance Fund by judge Miller Welborn.
These students worked with LAUNCH facilitators and interns during their fall semester, honing in and strategically developing their business ideas throughout the program, which took place at Tyner Academy, Brainerd High School and The Howard School.