All of our Year 8 students entered the Dragon’s Den on Thursday, 16 September. Each group pitched their business idea to a panel of (very friendly and not remotely scary) ‘dragons’ and received a variety of feedback, advice, and encouragement. A big thank you to our volunteer panellists and well done to all of our students! We have some real entrepreneurs-in-the-making so we’re excited to see some of these ventures brought to life in the near future. 

The Dragon’s Den panel provided the following overview and feedback after their involvement with us last week: 

The BIG Committee and Department of State Growth were delighted to be invited to work with Mrs Winchcombe and the Year 8 students on their ethical business project during term three. 

We are very lucky here in Burnie, many of our business leaders are very happy to give of their time to help our budding entrepreneurs.  We had three panels including our President of the Burnie Chamber of Commerce and the Managing Director of Stubbs Construction, as well as business and economic development advisors from the Department of State Growth and Regional Development Australia Tasmania.  And thank you also to Mr Sharman who was also able to join us – he has been inspired and is committed to start using a refillable water bottle. 

The Dragon’s Den was held at the College on Thursday, 16 September, where students were asked to present their business ideas. 

The resounding feedback from all of our Dragons was incredibly positive.  The array of ideas, with a clear focus on environment and social benefits was amazing.  Some of the ideas included: 

  • A gluten free and celiac friendly café – inspired by a family member 
  • Dog walking and socialisation training services 
  • A self-employed boiler maker welder 
  • A gym with options for same gender or mixed use areas – based in Queensland 
  • Sustainably sourced candles that can be refilled 
  • Hydrogen powered cars 
  • Body, face and lip scrubs from recycled coffee grounds 
  • A biodegradable fruit sticker 
  • Various ethically sourced soaps 
  • Protein shakes and bars set up next to a gym 
  • Tree seeds with discount vouchers 
  • An on-line healthy eating food and gift packs 
  • Jewellery that saves the koalas 
  • Sustainable children’s clothing that supports COVID initiatives 
  • Various products including jewellery, mobile phone cases and water bottles made from recycled ocean rubbish 
  • Horse jumps from recycled plastic 
  • An all-abilities skateboard park 
  • Various ideas on cycling, including bike customisation and new mountain bike tracks. 

Please excuse the long list – but I’d really like the College community to see the breadth of ideas that our young people have – and this isn’t all of them! 

We all recognise that it is not easy to speak to a panel of people you don’t know and present your ideas.  Marist Regional College should be very proud of the Grade 8s – they did a fantastic job.  Not only did they have fantastic business ideas, we saw some very well developed websites, sample products and marketing material. 

Quotes from a couple of our Dragons: 

From the very first group to the last I was blown away by the integrity, ethics, research and innovation showcased on the day.  I was particularly impressed, and also reassured, that so many of our young people are so passionate about sustainable industry, and already possess so many of the skills needed to develop, implement and operate a business.  I can’t wait to support our future entrepreneurs further and to witness the positive changes that are in store for our community, economy and planet.’ 

‘I want to congratulate all the students – I thought that they did a fantastic job, showed incredible maturity, with many of the ideas well thought through.  Super impressed!  Yes there were some nervous students, but hey, I reckon if I had to do that in Year 8 I would have been too.’ 

To pull all of this together is awesome – well done Year 8 – we can’t wait to see how your ideas develop. 

Jackie Harvey 

On behalf of the 2021 Dragon’s Den Panel 


Mrs Carolyn Winchcombe 

Middle Years Learning Area Leader: Global Connections