Political Website Created by Huntsman Students Awarded $5,000
Thursday, Feb. 09, 2012
A panel of judges recently recognized a political website that claims it can predict poll numbers in advance with a first-place award and $5,000.
The website, Politicit.com, was created by students, alumni and a faculty member from the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University. It took the top honors in a business innovation contest called Opportunity Quest.
The website analyzes multiple online sources to come up with what it calls an “IT score,” that offers a daily snapshot of how each presidential candidate is doing with the public. Using this technology the company says it has been able to predict poll numbers in advance.
The new website was selected from among 10 finalists as the winner of the business innovation competition that was open to all Utah State University students. Politicit.com now focuses on the race for Republican presidential nomination, and the creators of the site are working on similar features for local political races.
Josh Light, CEO of Politicit.com, said his group’s first-place finish was exciting, but their work is far from done.
“Entrepreneurship is synonymous with hard work,” Light said. “So while we are thrilled with the results of the competition, we want to use this as a stepping stone to expand the reach of our website.”
Rounding out the top three companies were second-place Page-Stroud Finance, which was awarded $2,000, and third-place Kilo Relay Series, which was awarded $1,000.
Mike Glauser, executive director of entrepreneurial programs at the Huntsman School, noted that the competition came to a close right around the same time the Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence opened.
“I couldn’t be more thrilled about the quality of the businesses that participated in the competition,” Glauser said. “This comes at a time when we have just opened a center to assist local start-ups, and I look forward to working with many of them in the future.”
The competition began in October 2011, and since then, participants had the chance to attend a series of workshops aimed at refining essential business skills such as marketing and finance. After 24 teams submitted executive summaries, 10 finalists were announced Dec. 16. The top 10 subsequently presented their final pitches, and the top three were announced at the Final Awards Banquet.
Opportunity Quest was directed by a student and involves student volunteers, many of them a part of the Entrepreneurship Club. Stuart Richards, director of competitions, organized the most recent competition.
“There are some dynamic start-ups right in our midst,” Richards said. “I hope this competition and future competitions will ignite the entrepreneurial spirit exemplified by our school’s namesake, Jon M. Huntsman.”
Contact: Steve Eaton, Jon M. Huntsman School of Business, 435-797-8640, firstname.lastname@example.org