Vote for Syracuse University students to become College Entrepreneur of 2009
Vote for Syracuse University students to become College Entrepreneur of 2009July 14, 2009Margaret Costello Spillettmcostell@syr.edu
A company created by three Syracuse University undergraduates and a 2009 alumnus is among the five finalists in Entrepreneur magazine’s College Entrepreneur of 2009 competition.
Brand-Yourself.com is the world’s first online reputation management platform for job applicants to establish, maintain and monitor a professional Web presence that gets them hired. Its tools help job seekers transform themselves from “net nobodies” to visible, credible, proactive job applicants. The company is one of five student groups working out of the Syracuse Technology Garden.
The company was created by School of Information Studies (iSchool) student Pete Kistler ’10 and alumnus Robert (R.J.) Sherman, a 2009 graduate of the iSchool and the Whitman School of Management, and their partners, Whitman students Trace Cohen ’11 and Evan Watson ’10.
The finalist receiving the most online votes will be awarded a 25-point preference in the final selection of the winner by an independent panel of judges. Voting runs through Oct. 12 at http://www.entrepreneur.com/e2009college/.
The team is vying for a $5,000 cash prize, a $500 gift certificate for products and services at the UPS Store, Entrepreneur Press books and magazine subscription, and coverage in two issues of Entrepreneur magazine.
The company has already attracted considerable attention. Brand-Yourself.com won second place and $10,000 in the Whitman School’s Panasci Business Plan Competition this spring, and the team was one of five finalists in New York’s Creative Core Emerging Business Competition in April.
Also in April, the Kairos Society named Brand-Yourself.com one of the top 100 most innovative student start-up companies in the country and recognized the team with its Best Marketing Award.
In March, co-founder Sherman was named one of Syracuse University’s first ever Engagement Fellows, a yearlong program supported by the Kauffman Foundation that contributes to paid employment locally and arranges remitted tuition for courses at SU and professional and faculty mentors. The fellowship will enable him to stay in Syracuse to continue developing Brand-Yourself.com at the Tech Garden and call on a well-developed network of support and resources.
Brand-Yourself.com is one of five start-ups selected to participate in the Student Sandbox at the Syracuse Technology Garden this summer. Throughout the summer, the students are receiving technical, legal, Web development and business support to prepare their ideas for the marketplace while maintaining ties with the University’s faculty expertise and the local business community. The expectation is that these student-initiated businesses will then move into incubator start-up space in the Tech Garden or into commercial properties throughout the city. The Sandbox is part of the Syracuse Student Start-Up Accelerator, a multidisciplinary SU Chancellor’s Leadership Project.
For more information about Brand-Yourself.com and the students who founded it, visit http://ischool.syr.edu/ilife/studentwork/brandyourself/.