Montclair State University held an event officially welcoming a generous donation of $500,000 to the the Feliciano School of Business given by alumnus entrepreneur AJ Khubani.
The special event invited and encouraged students to participate in the contest funded by BulbHead.com to win its annual prize pool of $80,000 – $50,000 for first place, $20,000 for second place and $10,000 for third place.
The event kicked off with free pizza for the students as the university’s mascot Rocky the Red Hawk danced through the crowd wearing a money-designed costume.
Dennis Bone, director of the Feliciano Center for Entrepreneurship, moderated the event and introduced the crowd of students to Montclair State President Susan Cole and alumnus Khubani.
Cole thanked all of the students and Khubani for their continuous commitment to education and contribution to the university.
“Our students at Montclair State University have a particular character to them,” Cole said. “They are not waiting for someone to hand them the world. They are ambitious innovators who are always ready to make their own way in the world.”
The School of Business has been prized for their innovation with student entrepreneurs. The pitch competition, held in May, gives students the opportunity to show their innovative strengths and ideas in the annual pitch competition.
Khubani, who graduated in 1984, helped establish the School of Business pitch competition and talked to the crowd of future student entrepreneurs about his journey of failures and successes as he ventured into the business market.
“I was able to take all the skills I acquired at Montclair State, such as financing, marketing, accounting and business, and incorporate them into building my brand,” Khubani said.
Khubani is the CEO and founder of TeleBrands, which is known for its “As Seen on TV” products, and its flagship BulbHead brand. He expressed his desire to see what the students of Montclair State would achieve with the prize money award to the pitch competition this coming May.
Many students who lined up to receive flyers and documentation to register were excited and encouraged for the next step in the future of the program.
Senior political science major Katherine Demarco expressed her gratitude for the university and the program that helps guide students to wider educational platforms.
“Even though I am not a business major or entrepreneur I am so happy the university provides us with support and the opportunity to showcase our abilities,” Demarco said. “Just having the opportunity makes a great difference.”