Innovation Center Graduate Assistant Awarded Funding

TAMU-CC College Student Awarded Funding

Earlier this year, the Innovation Center’s Graduate Assistant Derek Drozd, won second place in the Buc Days Ideas Challenge. After regrouping and working with the Center in the Incubation program, Drozd pitched his idea at the Islander Venture Fund event.

According to the article “New Islander Venture Fund Supports Student Entrepreneurs” on, “The Islander Venture Fund was established by Charles and Martha DeCou, who wanted to specifically support students with innovative thinking and great ideas for new products.”

His pitch, which included a five-year plan for The Mobile Fitness Network, was a success and he was awarded $7,500 to continue its development.

The Mobile Fitness Network is an online platform that allows users to book in-home training from qualified fitness professionals at affordable prices. It addresses a couple of problems with the current system, those being: revenue percentage splits with gyms that fitness professionals face and the intimidating gym environment.

Initially, Drozd was awarded $2,000 at the Buc Days Ideas Challenge; however, with this additional experience and seed money, Drozd feels confident in the direction of The Mobile Fitness Network.

“The brilliant minds of the University and Innovation Center staff provided continuous support in my preparations, which ultimately allowed me to execute the winning pitch,” stated Drozd.

In addition to winning $2,000 at the Buc Days Ideas Challenge, Drozd was awarded a one-year membership at the Innovation Center, which he utilized in his preparations.

Drozd believes that the Buc Days Ideas Challenge and the Islander Venture Fund have been invaluable experiences.

“Not many college students graduate with startup experience and having pitched a business to investors,” stated Drozd. “Competing in the Buc Days Ideas Challenge and Islander Venture Fund have helped me grow as an entrepreneur, and boosted my confidence in my ability to pitch for future funding.”

Drozd plans on using the awarded funds to complete and polish The Mobile Fitness Network over the summer with plans for a soft-launch in Corpus Christi in the fall.

For more information, please visit:
Buc Days Ideas Challenge
Islander Venture Fund