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Statler College students and alum to participate in prestigious pitch competitions to advance ICONIC EDU

Three men and one woman pose for a picture holding a certificate

ICONIC EDU founders and Statler College students win first place at the 2019 March Idea Challenge Competition, posing with Launchlab staff member Emma Hartle. From left to right: Kyle Gillis, James Carnes and Alan Brockman.

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Four West Virginia University students are earning money through national pitch competitions to promote their business venture, ICONIC EDU, which offers learning kits to bring free modern technology to the classroom. James Karnes, Kyle Gillis, Lynorra Grant and Alan Brockman have traveled across the country and recently won the grand prize at the WVU March Idea Challenge.


“Our goal is to empower students to be entrepreneurs and innovative thinkers. Encouraging them to participate in these pitch competitions are raising the bar for students to develop and pitch their business ventures on the national and even international level. The ICONIC Edu team showcases the level of talent in West Virginia and the LaunchLab is proud to help grow and retain high caliber students like James, Kyle and Lynnora.” Carrie White, West Virginia University’s assistant vice president for entrepreneurship and innovation

“In order to capture the imagination and attention of students, we provide schools with exciting new technologies that support curriculum in the classroom. Teachers can follow video modules we created that are fun and upbeat and help them facilitate the assembly of our kits with their students. By empowering students in the classroom with these new tools and understanding, West Virginia has the chance to be the first state to monitor air quality in every county.” —Kyle Gillis, Co-founder ICONIC EDU

“The entire team at the LaunchLab has been instrumental in helping us turn our idea into reality. Business guidance, funding opportunities, and sponsoring us as participants in national business competitions are just a few examples of how much they’ve helped us during our journey. Our team is very thankful for their guidance and support as we continue to develop and grow our business in West Virginia.” —James Carnes, Co-founder ICONIC EDU 




Targeted Audience:

  • Investors
  • Entrepreneurs
  • WVU Alumni
  • STEM educators
  • Education officials 
  • General public



CONTACT: Katie Farmer

Communications Director & Marketing Strategist, Office of the Provost,


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