GCC to host Innovation Summit on Glendale campus

Student entrepreneurs learn success at workshop


Glendale Community College, 6000 W. Olive Ave., hosted an Innovation Challenge Workshop Jan. 31-Feb. 1. The GCC Business and Information Technology Department organized the two-day program, which was designed to assist students in developing their business ideas and record a 3-minute pitch promoting their concept.

The event was led by Dr. Gabriela Cojanu, lead faculty member for Small Business and Entrepreneurship program at GCC.

There were a total of 19 “Pitches” submitted for review and judging. A judging panel will select seven pitches to be invited to participate in the live pitch competition where three winners will be selected and awarded prizes of $2,500, $1,500, and $1,000 for first, second and third places, respectively.

The live pitch competition will take place at GCC Wednesday, Feb. 19.

“The judges are going to have quite the challenge selecting just seven finalists from these dynamic ventures,” Dr. Cojanu stated in a news release. “The passion and enthusiasm these students showed during the two days of workshops was truly inspiring.”

Each finalist will present their pitch, live, to a panel of judges at the GCC Innovation Summit 2020. The panel is comprised of individuals from the following: Small Business Development Center, Glendale Chamber of Commerce, Credit Union West, and Grand Canyon University.

“Dr. Cojanu worked with many faculty and staff volunteers in facilitating the workshop and upcoming summit. A special thank you to Gabriela for all her hard work and dedication to make this workshop happen,” GCC Business and IT Department chair Rachelle Hall stated. “A big thank you goes to Heather Merrill, assistant department chair in Education; Yolanda Facio, SBDC analyst for Maricopa Small Business Development, and Brent Kleinman, GBS faculty, Business and Information Technology who also brought in two speakers to work with the group as well as Liz Cantu, communication faculty at EMCC also volunteered as a mentor.”

The upcoming GCC Innovation Summit 2020 goes 11:30 a.m.-7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 19 and includes an award presentation for the student finalists in the pitch competition.

Register at gccaz.edu/innovation-summit. Registration is free. Everyone is invited.