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Thursday, August 11, 2022

Vanguard High School senior wins ‘Shark Tank’ style competition

Marion County high school students pitched their ideas for a new business during a ‘Shark Tank’ style competition earlier this month.

The 8th Annual Marion County Youth Business Plan Competition was held on Monday, December 13 at the Raney’s Inc. auditorium located at 3030 W Silver Springs Boulevard in Ocala.

The competition was open to current 9th-12th grade students in Marion County who applied either as an individual or as part of a team with a maximum of five members.

During the December 13 event, five finalists presented their business pitch to a panel of judges.

Emilio Armas, a 12th grade student at Vanguard High School in Ocala, won the competition with his new startup called Mylomusic Designs. This company invents and manufacturers audio mixing hardware used in the music and entertainment industries.

Vanguard High School senior wins ‘Shark Tank style competition
Vanguard High School senior Emilio Armas won the competition with his new startup called Mylomusic Designs

Armas took home the top cash prize of $8,000, a trophy, a one-year entrepreneur-level partnership with the Ocala/Marion County Chamber and Economic Partnership, and a feature in CEP Network Magazine.

Busy Bees, a group of 11th grade students from Vanguard High School (Mackenzie Ragle, Violet Marchese, and Adyla Kerley), earned a second place finish along with a $4,000 cash prize.

Vanguard High School senior wins ‘Shark Tank style competition 1
Busy Bees, a group of 11th grade students from Vanguard High School, finished in second place

The group’s proposed idea was for a mobile app that integrates event planning and location sharing. In the event of an emergency, other people involved with the event planning would receive an alert to that person’s location, and the authorities would also be notified if needed.

Scan Surgeon was awarded third place and a $3,000 cash prize.  The group consisted of 11th and 12th grade students from West Port High School in Ocala (Victoria Goodrich, Jezebiel Gonzalez, Avneesh Saravanapavan, and Vivek Sandrapaty).

Vanguard High School senior wins ‘Shark Tank style competition 2
Scan Surgeon, a group of 11th and 12th grade students from West Port High School, finished in third place

They shared a concept for a subscription-based app that would use virtual reality to help train medical school students.

The event seeks to encourage students to think about entrepreneurship and what is involved in starting a business. During this year’s event, 27 team applications were received from 61 students representing six high schools throughout Marion County.

For more information on this year’s top prize winner, visit the Mylomusic Designs website.