PROVO, Utah – May 22, 2018 – For many upcoming seniors, their last year of college will consist of final classes, graduate school applications, and job interviews. For entrepreneurship student Sam Ballard, senior year will also include income statements and business meetings as he manages his dental restoration company.
Last month, Ballard’s successful startup venture, Ballard Dental Laboratories, earned him the title of Student Entrepreneur of the Year (SEOY) for the second time. He first entered and won the competition as a pre-management student in 2016. Ballard Dental Laboratories is the second company that Ballard has started, and he is currently working on creating a digital scanner to help simplify the impression and implant process.
“It is an overwhelming honor to be recognized by BYU and BYU Marriott in this capacity,” Ballard says. “It’s not an easy task to go to school and be building a business at the same time. SEOY gave student entrepreneurs a moment to look back and realize what we’ve accomplished.”
Hopetown Dental Lab—named for Ballard’s hometown of Hopetown, Bahamas—first caught the attention of the entrepreneurship community for its use of CAD CAM systems and state-of-the-art materials to create tooth casts. Ballard earned the 2016 SEOY title for the laboratory, and he recently sold the company.
“These accomplishments more than qualify Sam as Student Entrepreneur of the Year,” says Zach Hosman, co-president of the Entrepreneurship Club (eClub). “As the winner, he received a website and social media services, as well as strategy consulting, which will help his business going forward.”
SEOY is an annual competition hosted by the Rollins Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology and the eClub. Student entrepreneurs apply to the competition, and finalists are chosen based on their ideas, revenues, and growth projections.
This year’s second- and third-place finalists were Maiur Anand and Matthew Holley. Anand, a 2018 entrepreneurship graduate from Foz do Iguassu, Brazil, was recognized for his eco-friendly, disposable camping grill, The Barbacoa. Holley, a finance and economics double major from Provo, impressed judges with his successful paintball store, Saints Paintball. Finalists were rewarded consulting and analytics services from GLOBALEZ, a local digital marketing firm.
Other student entrepreneurs recognized at the event included:
• Jacob Chung, Five Sushi Brothers
• Eric Espinosa, Fresh Stamp, Inc.
• Parker Gentry, Skill Struck
• Morgen Glessing, Portal Entryways
• Caleb Lystrup, Khione Outdoor Gear
• Mark Mckellar, Provo CrossFit
• Nathan Sampson, Fotofection Photo Booth, LLC
• Emily Smith, Mentionables
• Tayler Tanner, Bookroo
• Caleb Wagner, BayWatch Technologies
Media Contact: Jordan Christiansen (801) 422-8938
Writer: Maggie Kuta