Participants from last year’s Junior Dragons’ Den Championship. (juniordragonsden.com)

Participants from last year’s Junior Dragons’ Den Championship. (juniordragonsden.com)

Junior Dragons’ Den hopefuls should apply soon

The deadline for this year’s Junior Dragons’ Den competition is quickly approaching.

The deadline for this year’s Junior Dragons’ Den competition is quickly approaching.

Students from Grade 7 upwards to university can pitch their business idea to a panel of judges — or dragons, similar to CBC’s Dragons’ Den — with a chance to win up to $1,500.

Competition is initially divided between the West Kootenay Boundary and the North-East regional competitions.

Students can enter either individually or in teams in one of three categories — Junior (Grades 7 to 10), Senior (Grades 11 and 12) and Post-Secondary — by submitting an application by Wednesday, Feb. 28.

“It’s a very straight-forward application,” says John Reed, junior initiatives coordinator for Community Futures Development Corporation of Greater Trail. “As long as they answer the questions to the best of their ability then that’s all we ask.”

Reed says that creativity is encouraged.

“We’re looking for bright creative ideas and they can be as straightforward or as complex as people want them to be,” he says. “So if its the next Facebook, or you’re going to come up with a ray gun to shrink the moon or its the next Snapchat app or a babysitting service, it’s all evaluated on the same level. Just because it’s more involved or requires more money to launch or start, doesn’t necessarily mean that it receives any undue weighting or consideration.”

Students shortlisted by the selection committee will be matched with a local mentor and then compete in one of the regional competitions.

The West Kootenay Boundary competition will take place Thursday, April 19 in Castlegar and the North-East BC competition will take place Friday, April 27 in Dawson Creek.

The top finalist will move on to compete in the Junior Dragons’ Den 2018 Championship in Trail on May 5 at the Charles Bailey Theatre.

Students can find applications at juniordragonsden.com and anyone with questions can contact John Reed at 250-368-1136 or john@communityfutures.com.

The program is also seeking mentors to work one on one with the student entrepreneurs.

Anyone interested can visit juniordragonsden.com/mentors and fill out an application or call John Reed at 250-368-1136.

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