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Student Entrepreneurs Preparing for Final Pitch to Investors

Sharks circled around to gather insights on innovation in the Business INCubator courses at NCHS and NNHS where students partner with local business owners and community volunteers to develop their own products and companies.


Naperville 203 recently held a networking breakfast thanking the INCubator mentors and coaches for sharing their expertise and enthusiasm with our students. Karyn Charvat, Executive Director at PowerForward DuPage, enthusiastically celebrated the learning in this course. She also stressed the benefits this volunteer engagement opportunity provides, “I feel inspired and energized by the ideas and efforts of these students.”


Following a chorus of District leaders who thanked each of the volunteers for sharing their rich insights and expertise with our students, NCHS teacher Brad Neubauer reiterated that this course could not happen without the partnerships we have developed. “You are making a huge impact on student learning.”


Mark Trembacki, Adjunct Instructor at the University of Illinois Gies College of Business and INCubatoredu Advisory Council member, added that this course gives students a head start on the “action learning” process at the collegiate level.


Workshop presenter and angel investor, Bruce Hanson, emphasized the passion and drive the INCubator course teaches students. He noted, “these are the key ingredients for a successful pitch and a successful business career.” At the recent workshop, Hanson offered best practice tips for a successful pitch to angel investors. “You never get two passes at an investor,” he said. INCubator coaches and mentors will share these best practices with their students in preparation for their final pitch.


The culminating project for Business Incubatoredu course mirrors the popular Shark Tank show. The public is invited to attend Pitch Night on May 10 at Wentz Hall on the campus of North Central College. All student teams will showcase their concepts from 6- 7 p.m. followed by a formal pitch presentation highlighting five student teams competing for funds to accelerate their business concepts.

Pitch Night is open to all community members and potential investors. This event is co-sponsored by the Naperville Education Foundation, fiscal agent for community-funded INCubator program. To learn more about how you can help student teams move their authentic business ideas from concept to start-up, please visit


We look forward to seeing you on May 10.