Bauer students freeze for entrepreneurship class

While the Texas Renaissance Festival featured its usual dancing and jousting during its opening weekend, UH students organized a performance that took fair-goers by surprise — a freeze mob.

It was no spontaneous act, but rather a project highlighting the creative thinking within the Wolff Center for Entrepreneurship program at the C.T. Bauer College of Business.

Students in professor Carlos Ortega’s Entrepreneurship and International Marketing class were required to put together a freeze mob and post it on YouTube in order to compete among classmates for the most views.

“The purpose of the YouTube video contest and the freeze mob is to bring a real life experience of entrepreneurship to the class,” Ortega said.

According to Ortega, he approaches his classroom in three different ways: academically, real world application and sharing his personal real world experience.

“I share my experience on what has worked for me and what hasn’t worked for me so it can help them in the pitfalls they might experience,” Ortega said.

The contest challenges students to come up with a product, organize it, put it in the marketplace and market the video to get as many views as possible.

The students were divided into groups and were assigned to construct a mob of at least 50 individuals. The project counts for 50 percent of the grade.

Students will also be graded on how well their video does on YouTube, which will be judged by the amount of views each clip receives.

One particular group decided that the Renaissance Festival would be an ideal location due to the myriad of people in costumes, making an even more interesting video.

“The Renaissance seemed like a good fit because of all the people; a freeze mob there would really stand out and attract some attention,” said junior business major Alex Franco.

Franco and his group members Luis Flores, Eldred Rivas and Abigail Silva— who are also all junior business majors — spread the word to friends and family members to join in on the video.

An event notification was created on Facebook and Twitter to increase awareness of the project.

“The hard part, of course, is getting people to show,” Flores said. “The downside with where the project is located is that it is a bit of a drive and it costs money.”

On Saturday, it seemed as if the students’ fears would be realized when the clock was rapidly ticking toward showtime, and they lacked the required amount of participants.

“I was really nervous because only my friends and family were there, but thanks to my mom’s persuasion we were able to go out and ask and gather more than enough people,” Silva said.

The group gathered 60 participants to include in the mob.

“It went surprisingly well,” Franco said. “The people at the festival are really easy going and they made it possible for us to make this freeze mob a success. We couldn’t have picked a more perfect place for it.”

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