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The Spring 2017 issue of the Eagle Executive magazine is available online at

Students compete in the fourth annual 3 Day Startup on campus

The Georgia Southern University Business Innovation Group (BIG) hosted the annual 3 Day Startup (3DS) February 24-26, with the final pitches delivered Sunday, February 26 at 7 p.m. in the Information Technology Building on campus. 3DS is a world-renowned, weekend-long program that creates a living entrepreneurship laboratory that brings together individuals from various backgrounds and provides students with the tools needed to start successful companies.

On the first day, participants arrive with their most promising ideas for new companies. Some bring pre-built technology that is waiting to be commercialized, while others bring napkins with ideas written on them. Throughout the weekend, participants shape and craft their innovations into pitches that are presented to a panel of judges and in front of a live audience.

This year’s 3DS facilitator from the Austin, Texas, program was Georgia native, Ellyson Glance. Glance helped students from all majors across the University prepare for the weekend as they gathered to create business ideas to develop. Six ideas were presented during final pitches, ranging from hair care products to digital shopping, and students worked with and received guidance from mentors throughout the weekend.

“This is by far my favorite event to organize for the students,” said Program Manager Suzanne Hallman. “It requires a lot of preparation, but the payoff is worth it. Every year we hear great ideas and see huge strides our students make over the weekend. I enjoy working with fellow Eagles and look forward to helping them launch their dreams right here at Georgia Southern.”

Ultimately, panelists chose “Whipp,” natural hair care products consisting of base cream and oils customized to each individual’s needs and “whipped” together by consultants, and “Easy Bustle,” a simple solution to complicated wedding dress bustling issues, as the most viable products to move on to participate in the FastPitch event in Savannah in April. FastPitch allows entrepreneurs to make a three minute pitch of their innovative venture and be assessed as to the viability of the ventures by local community leaders, academics, and investors. Coaching and feedback is provided before, during and after to better prepare presenters, their ideas and their presentations of that idea.

Other business ideas worked on throughout the weekend included:

  • FlashBack – glasses that record what “just happened” by using a cache so users can live in the moment and relive unforgettable moments
  • My Kid – a device that helps parents stay in range of kids to prevent losing them in crowded family theme parks and venues
  • Versity – an ecosystem for student entrepreneurs to connect with each other and the community to offer goods and services
  • Digital Shopper – groceries from the store delivered to the customer’s door via a fast and reliable service

This intensive weekend event was filled with activities including workshops, business idea generation, customer engagement sessions and pitching the ideas to the judges. 3DS is a collaborative event that encourages students to cross-pollinate, learning from each other.

“The Business Innovation Group creates this great opportunity for our students to get real experience with the development of ideas into business models, and the students love it,” said Steve Stewart, Ph.D., an assistant professor of management who teaches in the Entrepreneurship program. “It’s great when students get excited about seeing all their education come to life in real-world circumstance, and to have that validated by other mentors and judges … that’s always an important moment in the educational process, and ultimately will lead to students starting companies that create jobs.”

The Georgia Southern University BIG prides itself on its commitment to empower and equip entrepreneurs. 3DS is an example of the commitments BIG makes to create more businesses and jobs in order to sustain the economy. For more information, contact Suzanne Hallman, business advisor, at, or visit

Since its inception, 3DS has hosted more than 300 programs across six continents and has launched scores of startups, collectively raising millions of dollars in funding. Dozens of 3DS innovations are accepted into prestigious accelerator and incubator programs.

The event is provided at no cost to the students. BIG depends on sponsors like Coca Cola, Krispy Kreme, The Downtown Statesboro Development Authority, El Jalapeño, Little Italy, and The Clubhouse to help offset costs of meals and drinks for the weekend. This event would not be possible without BIG partnerships with the College of Business and the Allen E. Paulson College of Engineering and Information Technology.

University to participate in annual Savannah St. Patrick’s Day Parade

Next week, amid a sea of green, Georgia Southern will stand out as the Best and Brightest in the 193rd Savannah St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Friday, March 17.

For the eighth consecutive year, the University will host a float decked out in school spirit and a convertible with the University president. President Jaimie Hebert, Ph.D., will ride alongside members of the Southern Pride Marching Band, Georgia Southern cheerleaders and Miss Georgia Southern University, Tori Murray.

This year’s float will also feature The Dean’s List, a band comprised of Dean of the College of Business Administration Allen Amason, Ph.D., Assistant Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences Jason Stone, Ph.D., faculty members Krista Petrosino, Ph.D., Tim Kintzinger, Ph.D., and alumnus Zeb Mitchell. The band will perform a variety of songs from famous Irish artists.

As always, the University’s bald eagle mascot Freedom will accompany the float and add some extra spirit to the event.

Thor Robertson, junior accounting major, will carry on his lasting family participation in the parade by being the third generation of Robertson men to work on parade committees.

Not only does Georgia Southern have a longstanding history with the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, but it also has Irish roots that stem far past participating in the second largest national St. Patrick’s Day parade.

The University Honor’s Program, along with the Center for Irish Research and Teaching, have been introducing Georgia Southern students to Irish culture through the Wexford-Savannah Axis for almost four years. Undergraduate and graduate students spend several weeks during the summer in Savannah and in Wexford County, Ireland, researching Savannah Irish descendants.

Sarah Ryniker, current graduate student and one of many students who have participated in the study abroad program, has created a database of Irish families who came to live in Savannah. Through her research, she has been able to uncover lasting impacts the Irish made on Savannah after immigrating to the city in the 1800s.

For more information about the CIRT visit

BIG Pitch Award Competition Offers $10,000 to Collegiate Innovator

Ocean Exchange and Georgia Southern University College of Business Administration announce the 2017 BIG Pitch Award Competition for $10,000. They invite undergraduate and graduate student innovators with solutions in the field of sustainability to apply. The BIG Pitch Award is in its third year. Prior winners were from Stanford University and the University of Illinois-Urban/Champaign.

Dr. Allen Amason, Dean of the College of Business Administration, commented, “Georgia Southern is excited once again to sponsor the Big Pitch Competition, in partnership with the Ocean Exchange. The innovations we’ve seen and the solutions we’ve been able to support have been brilliant in concept and revolutionary in application. We truly believe this is an opportunity for bright, young innovators to change the world for the better.”

Eight finalists will be selected in early September by a multi-disciplinary team of business and technical leaders. The finalists will be invited to present at Ocean Exchange in Savannah, GA October 8th at the Ocean Exchange event which runs October 8-10, 2017 at the Savannah International Trade and Convention Center.

Ocean Exchange is a 501c3 with the sole mission to help advance the adoption of solutions in the field of sustainability, focusing on startup companies with working prototypes. Watch for upcoming announcement of 2017 Ocean Exchange Awards Competition for early stage companies. Key sponsors are Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics, Gulfstream, Savannah Economic Development Authority, Southern Company, Georgia Ports Authority, Bunge, and Oceaneering.

Find out more about the BIG Pitch competition rules and deadlines at

Source: Ocean Exchange

Alumnus Luke Bryan to perform at Super Bowl LI

Luke Bryan (MGMT, ’99), Georgia Southern alumnus and award-winning country music artist, has been selected to perform the national anthem at the 51st Super Bowl, making him the first male performer to sing the anthem in 10 years and the first country artist to perform it since 2010.

Now one of the most popular stars in country music, the Leesburg, Georgia, native was perfecting his talents in front of audiences in Statesboro establishments as a student at Georgia Southern. While pursuing a degree in business management, the Sigma Chi fraternity brother wrote music and played with his band on weekends.

Bryan has come a long way from his time in Statesboro and at Georgia Southern, where he also met his wife, Caroline Boyer. He has achieved numerous awards including Entertainer of the Year by the Country Music Association and twice by the Academy of Country Music. Since the release of his first hit single “All My Friends Say,” he has celebrated seven No. 1 singles, several platinum and gold singles and a platinum album for his newest record “Kill the Lights.” In 2014, he achieved the best touring year of his career with 1.7 million fans attending his concerts, and in early 2015, he played his first-ever shows in Europe.

Bryan is also known for his generosity, having provided proceeds to Georgia Southern for scholarships from his past Farm Tour stops in the Statesboro area. Most recently, he has announced he will team up with fellow Eagle Cole Swindell and Georgia-native Phillip Phillips to perform a benefit concert for those in South Georgia affected by the recent storms.

At Super Bowl LI on Feb. 5, Bryan will join the ranks of country performers like the Dixie Chicks, Carrie Underwood, Garth Brooks and Faith Hill who have all sung the national anthem at past Super Bowls.
Georgia Southern alumni and students are accomplishing amazing things! Don’t miss Luke Bryan’s performance on Sunday, Feb. 5 at 6:30 p.m.