'Shark Tank' star visits Notre Dame to give IDEA week keynote speech

NOW: ’Shark Tank’ star visits Notre Dame to give IDEA week keynote speech

NOTRE DAME, Ind. --- The University of Notre Dame welcome ‘Shark Tank’ star Daymond John on Thursday night as he gave the 2018 IDEA Week keynote speech. 

John, FUBU clothing line creator, talked to the crowd on campus about the qualities of a SHARK:

  • Set goals
  • Do your homework
  • Amor (love)
  • Remember your brand
  • Keep swimming

He spoke about lessons he learned during his time with FUBU and the ABC show ‘Shark Tank.’ 

“You go, and you pitch it, you may not win today but you sharpen your ax on how to cut down that tree a little more accurately by learning from the tough competition,” he said. 

John is set to help judge the university’s 17thannual McCloskey New Venture Competition, where students and community members will pitch their business ideas just like many people do on ‘Shark Tank.’ On Thursday, 40 semi-finalist teams pitched their ideas to more than 20 business leaders and university faculty. 

Only six teams will pitch their ideas to John. 

“There’s $400,000 of prize money up for grabs,” said Alison Hennessy, a McCloskey competitor. “So it’s incredibly exciting to be able to have the opportunity to potentially fund our venture after this.”

The President of the South Bend Chamber of Commerce said right now is the perfect business environment for entrepreneurs.

“The state, the local government, the work force preparedness,” said Jeff Rea. “All those things are really contributing to kind of an exciting time.”

Rea said some entrepreneurs will do well and some will not. He said St. Joseph County is trying to create an environment that embraces failure in order to have success in the future.

A message John mirrored, after his keynote speech.

“You don’t just live in this little bubble, you got to get out there to the world,” he said. “Find some mentors, take affordable steps, and of course, educate yourself.”




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