Helping the PitchWritten by Helen Schlenker
- Published: August 09, 2018
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Dallas, TX - DBU alumnus Derrick Battle is the embodiment of DBU’s vision to produce Christ-centered servant leaders by utilizing his degree in Entrepreneurship as the Site Manager at Camp Sunshine in Oak Cliff.
Camp Sunshine is a day camp that works to diminish the summer’s negative impact on learning. Specifically, the camp staff work with children and youth, kindergarten through twelfth-grade, from low-socioeconomic backgrounds. During the three-month camp, thirty campers study a variety of subjects and gain hands-on experience through field trips. This year, the theme of the camp was “Business Leaders of Tomorrow.”
Throughout the summer, the campers engaged in a variety of business-minded activities, including touring the Bureau of Engraving and Printing in Fort Worth, building small robots at an Apple store, and pitching business ideas at a mock “Shark Tank” meeting.
“This camp is amazing,” reflected Derrick. “Every day, they experience something new, and they are constantly learning and evolving.”
Derrick took a leadership role in the development of the “Shark Tank” reenactment as small groups of students created an imaginary business and pitched their ideas to a panel of judges. On this panel sat Dr. Ross O’Brien, DBU Professor of Management, along with three other DBU business students.
During the pitch, the panel interviewed the students and helped them as they discussed their business models. The goal was to receive a “bid” from one or more judges willing to “invest” in their company. The competition allowed campers to interact with a real world business environment while also having a bit of creative freedom.
Derrick hopped in on the panel as well, using his entrepreneurial knowledge he gained during his time in the classroom. The students hash out their ideas, and Derrick helped them by providing the necessary strategic ideas to help their “businesses” succeed.
“My dream for these kids is that they do the best they can in anything that they choose to do,” Derrick said. “We have a lot of kids with a so much potential, and I hope they maximize it.”