Undergrads snag $5,000 prize for new social media app


A team of fourth-year undergrads from the class New Venture Design won the Alerus Entrepreneurship Challenge held at the University North Dakota in Grand Forks on April 16.

The team made up of BComs Adrien Herberts, Joey Tai and Peter Yang, and engineering students Frankie Angai, William Yan and Eric Villeneuve, nabbed the $5,000 grand prize for their location-based social media application, WeeV. Team member Adrien Herberts also took home $250 for winning the "Best Elevator Pitch" segment of the competition.

Unlike other location-based apps such as Foursquare, the team's WeeV platform is designed specifically for university students navigating and socializing in a university setting. The application allows students to easily find friends, classmates, academic tutors and more with their mobile devices, while moving around campus. 

The winning product innovation was created as a project for the course New Venture Design, offered jointly by UBC's Sauder School of Business and the Faculty of Applied Science. The course acts as the catalyst that brings together outstanding business and engineering students to invent products, file patents, develop working prototypes and seek funding for new start-ups.

Since its launch in 2003, the class has spawned numerous teams that have gone on to win business innovation competitions at home and around the world, as well as alumni who have founded a series of successful businesses startups.

In addition to the Alerus Entrepreneurship Challenge, the WeeV team also won a $2,000 prize at the University of British Columbia Venture Capital and Private Equity Entrepreneurship Competition on March 19.