Nov. 16, 2016 (COLUMBIA, S.C.): RumbleLab, a mail subscription service for kids’ STEM activity kits, was selected via live voting and announced as the winner of EngenuitySC’s $5,000 Ignite! 2016 Ideas Contest, sponsored by Nephron Pharmaceuticals, at the new First Base Building at BullStreet on Wednesday evening, Nov. 16, 2016.
The $5,000 award was presented by Meghan Hickman, executive director of EngenuitySC, alongside Nephron Pharmaceuticals’ Hank Jibaja, chief information officer, and Lindsey Miles, manager of executive affairs, at the close of the Ignite! celebration.
RumbleLab, submitted by Moultrie Ball, is a monthly subscription box service of hands-on, fun, informal STEM educational learning materials for kids. RumbleLab focuses on getting STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) learning tools to parents’ doorsteps, for naturally curious, innovative children who are not gaining those skills through the traditional U.S. education system – and want to be more knowledgeable in STEM topics and prepared for the future.
The prize dollars from the $5,000 Ignite! 2016 Ideas Contest will allow RumbleLab to test the classroom model of the concept with Richland County School District Two school North Springs Elementary, and to focus on scaling the business.
RumbleLab was live voted by nearly 300 Ignite! attendees as the best idea to move the Midlands forward out of three finalists, all of whom presented their business concepts at the Ignite! celebration, vying for the $5,000 Ignite! 2016 Ideas Contest seed money to kick start their business. The other Ignite! Ideas Contest finalists were Bonded, a new women’s empowerment online media platform, submitted by Brittany Kilpatrick and Samantha Shapin, and Kitchen Conversations by Sexual Trauma Services of the Midlands, a proposed “Tupperware party”-style sexual health conversation series for parents, submitted by Mary Dell Hayes and Kayce Singletary.
EngenuitySC’s Ignite! is the Midlands region’s annual celebration of innovation, entrepreneurship and economic competitiveness, bringing together nearly 300 movers and shakers in the business, creative, civic, tech, entrepreneurial and startup communities.
In addition to live voting for the winner of the $5,000 Ignite! Ideas Contest winner, attendees enjoyed open bar, heavy hors d’oeuvres, networking and a notable program of three TED Talk-style addresses by dynamic leaders in the Midlands of South Carolina: Melanie Huggins, executive director of Richland Library, and Elise Partin, Mayor of Cayce; economic leader Mike Crapps, founder of First Community Bank; and artists and creative entrepreneurs Michaela Pilar Brown and Darion McCloud.
Ignite! was hosted at the vast, raw space of the new First Base Building at BullStreet, adjacent to Spirit Communications Park (home of the Columbia Fireflies), by EngenuitySC board founding co-chairs Steve Benjamin, Mayor of Columbia, S.C., and Dr. Harris Pastides, President of the University of South Carolina – as well as emcee Mary King, award-winning news reporter.
The sponsor of the Ignite! 2016 Ideas Contest, Nephron Pharmaceuticals Corporation, is a global leader in manufacturing generic respiratory medications in a sterile, highly automated environment. A woman-owned business, Nephron Pharmaceuticals recently moved its headquarters to West Columbia, S.C., right outside of owner and CEO Lou Kennedy’s hometown of Lexington.
Additional Ignite! 2016 Anchor Sponsors are BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, sponsor of the evening’s networking hour, and Spirit Communications, sponsor of the event’s Wi-Fi connection. Competitiveness Sponsors are SCRA, the University of South Carolina Office of Economic Engagement and Midlands Technical College. Collaboration Sponsors are BullStreet; First Community Bank; Mashburn Construction; Midlands Authority for Conventions, Sports and Tourism; Ogletree Deakins; SCE&G; LLE Construction; Nelson Mullins; USC Faber Entrepreneurship Center; M.B. Kahn; KW Beverage; Grace Outdoor; NAI Avant; Lower Richland High School; Hopkins Middle School; Southeast Middle School; BrightBytes; and Columbia Fireflies.
Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., EngenuitySC is an economic development nonprofit focused on enhancing our region’s competitiveness and prosperity. In partnership with business, government, education and community leaders, EngenuitySC specializes in regional collaboration and project management; the activation of local industry clusters; and regional research, analysis and marketing. For more information, visit http://www.engenuitysc.com.
Featured: Meghan Hickman of EngenuitySC; Moultrie Ball of Ignite! Ideas Contest-winning business RumbleLab; Lindsey Miles and Hank Jibaja of Nephron Pharmaceuticals at Ignite! 2016 | photo by Sean Rayford