Final Exam Pits Montclair Inventors Against Each Other For $10,000 Prize

MONTCLAIR, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — College students in Montclair competed for thousands of dollars on Wednesday.

As CBS2’s Cindy Hsu reported, it all boiled down to who had the best invention.

The students had four minutes to pitch their inventions to a panel of experts.

Dana Tirico presented the SPOT Vac — a mini vacuum for pets.

“This will take tics, fleas, and allergens off your animal,” she said.

Others created the Geo Collection — biodegradable backpacks and purses that contain absolutely no metal or plastic.

“So we like to say when consumers have decided they are done with the bag they can bury it in their backyards and they’ll never have to worry about any chemical footprint left behind,” Joshua Miller said.

The pitches are the students’ final exams. The winner gets $10,000 along with great advice from industry experts. Anthony Sullivan calls himself a pitchman extraordinaire — he said the key is to sell the invention even before approaching a marketer.

“Get a table at a flea market, take your invention, and see if you can sell it and do it the hard way. There is no easy way to do it,’he said.

Also, do your research and make sure no on else has already come up with the idea. You can apply for a provisional patent at the website uspto.gov, which can protect your idea.

If you’re quick to buy things right after seeing an ad on TV protect yourself.

“The moment someone buys something that doesn’t work, what happens? They post it on social media. So if they want to make sure they’re not being scammed look at reviews online. That will tell them right away,” AJ Khubani, President, Telebrands/Bulbhead said.

Graduate student Jamie Wisniewski and her partner Serena Alvarez won the competition.

“We are selling a sizing bra. Essentially you try it on, take measurements on both sides of the cups, upload measurements, and we send you a custom fit bra,” Wisniewski said.

She now has $10,000 to grow her business.

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