Dillon Anderson knows his hockey.
The judges of the Make Your Pitch competition certainly understood that.
The grade 10 student at West Ferris Secondary School was one of 20 students from across the province chosen as finalists to pitch a business idea in front of judges at this year’s Discovery Conference which took place in Toronto earlier this week.
Dillon became a finalist, with help from classmate Humayoun Khan, as they put together a two-minute video about a Northern Ontario Hockey School idea.
“It would be for hockey players 15 to 17 years old, skilled hockey players,” said Anderson.
“They have to be elite and we want to develop them here in Northern Ontario and aid the skill development process which we do not have in northern Ontario at this moment.”
After the judges took in all the presentations, they felt Dillon’s was the best of the best.
“It was overwhelmingly a great experience,” said Anderson, who is an avid Battalion fan and is a scout with the NOJHL’s Powassan Voodoos.
“It is a huge recognition, It was nice to beat out 20 great ideas and happy to come back with some hardware.”
Karen Bond is his business teacher at West Ferris. She believes the sky is the limit for Dillon Anderson.
“This is really special to be honest with you, this is a very unique young man, very talented and passionate about both business and hockey,” Bond said about Anderson, who has cerebral palsy.
“What I love about this is that he is able to use his passion for hockey and his knowledge of business and come up with a very realistic business concept that I think he will actually move forward with. This type of competition allows students to do what I call soft skills, so it is a business presentation skills, the ability to network with business experts.
“This is just something they will not get in the classroom so it is great.”
Anderson is the first North Bay student to win the provinical award in the seven years of the program’s existence.
The young entrepreneur took home a number of prizes and will receive $1500 in startup funding to get his hockey school business idea off the ground and onto the ice.