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Coal Tank: Central Appalachia's Very Own Version of Shark Tank!

New Heights Consortium and Williamson Health and Wellness Center want to give kids in the area the chance to see how they can succeed in the business world. That’s how Coal Tank, the Coalfield’s version of Shark Tank, got started, says Nathaniel “Nate” Siggers. “This is an opportunity for our youth to realize they don’t always have to work for someone else,” he says. “It’s a way to show, not only the world, but ourselves that we are just as innovative as the rest of the world, by creating businesses and gateways for success.”

Coal Tank includes students in 6th through 12th grades. To prepare, they first pushed schools to get involved. “We went to all the schools in the area, and they had a pre-event in which they declared a winner, and those kids will represent each school,” Nate says. Schools throughout Mingo County, West Virginia as well as students at Belfry High School and Middle School in Pike County, Kentucky will be represented.

Hand-Picked Judges

Judges will be local entrepreneurs and business owners, and all have been handpicked by Dr. Dino Beckett of Williamson Health and Wellness Center. Students will each pitch their business or product to judges in order to be judged. Winners will be awarded monetary prizes: $1000 to the first place winner, $500 to the second place winner, and $250 to the third place winner.

Planting a Seed

Nathaniel and the staff of New Heights Consortium and Williamson Health and Wellness Center hope that this event will help to plant the seed that “they can do anything in this world that they want to,” Nate says. Coal Tank will take place at the Belfry High School Auditorium on Friday, May 6 at 6pm.

Cover Photo Flyer from New Heights Consortium Facebook page

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