Some of the Businesses Created by Hope College Students*


Songs Against Slavery is a non-profit organization founded by Grace Theisen and Lauren Lancaster. They had this crazy idea that their passion for music and Jesus could help others escape the chains of modern-day slavery.  From performing right on the streets of downtown Holland themselves to having Steve Moakler and Andrew Ripp play concerts right here at Hope to help fight against slavery, they’ve had tremendous success.



Sweet Spot Wheels

Being a Pre-Med and Jazz Studies Major, it only makes sense to start your own longboard wheel company, right?  For Jared Demeester it did.  Jared and his pal, Alex Bolen, created Sweet Spot Wheels, a long board wheel company that donates 10% of sales towards building wells and providing clean water to remote villages in Africa and other regions where clean water is scarce.  These wheels are so cool that Sweet Spot Wheels won $25,000 from Start Garden, and are used by all the hipsters on campus.  Milk Surfer wheels even come in milk cartons!


Ring Cam

Who knew college classes were useful?  In their senior year, some engineering students applied their learning and created Ring Cam in their senior design class.  Ring Cam is a ring box that is able to video record those precious moments when a guy is popping the question to his gal from the ring box itself.  The students won numerous competitions and have been working on this business even after they graduated.  The irony of this business?  None of the the creators are engaged.



Have no fear, freshmen year is here!  At least that’s what Jessica Granger’s motto must be since she’s started her business as a first-year student at Hope College.  Jessica and Macall Smith have been working on an app they call Tizzy.  Tizzy helps you decide which clothes to wear for that special occasion, or even just to see who your friends are picking to win the basketball game against Calvin.  (We all know the answer to that one though.)  Post two pictures on the app, and your friends vote on which is better.  It’s just like Instagram, except you can tizzy it up!

Jam Jars

It’s really cool how a chemistry major helps one become a “craftier” person!  I guess that’s what must have happened to Matt Gira.  As a first-year student, Matt was playing around with speakers as part of his introductory engineering course, and bam!  Lio was born.  This year, not yet thinking it would be such a cool product, he brought us his first Jam Jar prototype in October.  Now he’s developed a great looking, awesome sounding, environmentally friendly, and socially-conscious product.  (Matt gives 7% of sales towards fighting world hunger.)


( coming soon!)


Ideas are all around us.  We help students harness those ideas and develop them.

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We don’t teach leadership.

We create leaders by co-creating work experiences.  That matter.

*Text written by Matt Gira.

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