MHA alum earns funding for unique app concept

Just six months after graduating from Mars Hill Academy, Matthew Williams ('19) put his rhetoric skills to the test during Grove City College's 2019 Elevator Pitch Competition. He secured fourth place and $200 for his startup, EasyTie, an app to help tie the perfect necktie.

"EasyTie is an app that allows the user to tie his tie right the first time everytime," he explained. "The gentleman's art of tying the necktie is dying, but the need is still alive and well. What was once a skill passed from fathers to sons is now lost."  

In this exciting pitch competition, student entrepreneurs from 15 different majors each had just two minutes to make the case for a new product, business, nonprofit, or service to a panel of judges. This year’s contest saw 144 students making pitches.

Williams recalled his own personal struggles of learning to properly manipulate a tie on his way to Mars Hall, making sure he got the right length, "so it didn't look like I was wearing a bib but also so I wouldn't trip over it as I walked down the hall."

EasyTie would decrease the stress and panic men experience before tie-wearing occasions by teaching proper technnique and calculating the exact placement of the tie to get the proper length. The app would do so by accessing the smart phone's camera and measuring the user's torso and tie length. 

The goal of GCC's Elevator Pitch Competition is to teach students to communicate effectively and allow their charisma to shine through in just a short pitch. An elevator pitch is a business term that means an idea for a new venture is explained in the time it would take to ride up in an elevator.