Online Extra: FABricate offers $10,000 prize in 2020

Herb Girls’ 2019 Winning Entry Perks Up Coffee

Coffee is great for a morning pick me up, but there’s a catch — the energy doesn’t last. Two UGA graduate students who work at UGArden — University of Georgia’s student-run farm — have turned their solution to that midday slump into a successful business. 

College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES) agribusiness master’s degree student Eileen Schaeffer-Brantley and UGA psychology student Amy WrIght’s homegrown company, Herb Girls, developed Rally Coffee — their herbal coffee supplement — in 2018. It was a hit with their dedicated herbalista fanbase, but it gained a much wider following after the women won the CAES 2019 FABricate entrepreneurship contest. 

“I only had one business class in high school and it was about … how not to get credit cards and how to save money,” said Schaeffer-Brantley. “The skills we have learned while running a business, we now realize you have to learn as you go, but you also need to have a background in business and what you are specializing in.” 

UGA students are already preparing for the 2020 contest, which has been opened to all majors. The competition will culminate in March when teams make their final pitches to the judges to win the newly expanded grand prize of $10,000.

Launched in 2017 as a way to develop an entrepreneurial climate at CAES, FABricate is part of a larger entrepreneurship focus at UGA that has encouraged students across campus to put their ideas to work.

The FABricate contest and its companion entrepreneurship course are supported by economic development and agribusiness faculty at CAES and by CAES alumni Caroline Hofland (BSA — Agricultural Economics, ’83; MS – Agricultural Economics, ’86) and Keith Kelly (BSA — Agricultural Economics, ’80). 

The connections Schaeffer-Brantley and Wright made at through contest also helped the young entrepreneurs expand their market presence from an online-only storefront to Kelly’s locally grown specialty store, Fairview Market, on U.S. Highway 441 in Madison. 

UGA students are already preparing for the 2020 contest, which has been opened to all majors. The competition will culminate in March when teams make their final pitches to the judges to win the newly expanded grand prize of $10,000.

For more information about how to become involved in the FABricate program visit tinyurl.com/caesfabricate.

 


2019 FABricate winners
FABricate entrepreneurship competition judges, from left, Four Athens' Jim Flannery, CBH International's Caroline Hofland, and Farmview Market's Keith Kelly, congratulate CAES agribusiness master’s degree student Eileen Schaffer and psychology student Amy Wright, otherwise known as Herb Girls Athens, for their win with their healthy coffee supplement, Rally Coffee.