Round 1: Problem-Solution

Application Deadline: Nov. 24, 2017

Competition Date: Dec. 1, 2017

Presentation Format: up to 2 minutes, 2 slides
Award: Top 10, $100 and in-kind support

Meet Round 1 Judges and Award Winners (PDF)

Round 2: Proof of Concept

Application Deadline: Jan. 26, 2018

Competition Date: Feb. 2, 2018

Presentation Format: up to 5 minutes, 5 slides
Award: Top 5, $250 and in-kind support

Meet Round 2 Judges and Award Winners (PDF)

Round 3: Business Plan

Business plan submission Deadline: April 10, 2018

Submit via email to Dr. Jacqueline Khorassani (

Competition Date: April 20, 2018

Presentation Format: Up to 10 minutes (10 slides) presentation, followed by up to 10 minutes Q&A with the competition judges
Award: Depending on the quality and financial needs of proposed projects, up to $10,000 in cash and in-kind support will be awarded either to the top project or distributed between the top two or top three projects.

Who can compete?

  • Any full-time Marietta College student may compete alone or as a member of a 2 to 3 person team.
  • The second and third team members do not have to be Marietta College students.
  • Each team may submit up to three business ideas.
  • Only the student members of a team may make presentations and receive the award money.
  • Students must have an ownership stake in the proposed businesses.

What types of business ideas qualify for the competition?

  • All business ideas must be appropriate for a college-sponsored competition. Marietta College may disqualify any entry that is inappropriate, in its judgment.
  • In order to compete, you must be in the start-up phase of your business which means that you either intend to launch the proposed business in the future or have a business that is less than one year old with revenue of less than $10,000.
  • Solutions must result in the establishment of a for-profit or non-profit business in the Mid-Ohio Valley.
  • Proposals to buy franchises or distribution centers of existing companies are not accepted.
  • The proposed business ideas will be evaluated, in part, based on the degree to which they contribute toward the standard of living (by generating income and jobs, for example) and/or the quality of life (by improving the environment, for example) in the Mid-Ohio Valley.

What is the Problem-Solution round of the competition?

In this round of competition, all you have to do is to clearly identify and describe a problem and offer a solution.

What is the Proof of Concept round of the competition?

This round of competition consists of testing the validity, practicality, or marketability of the proposed solution by building a prototype and/or gauging potential customers’ and other stakeholders’ interest.

What should we include in our Business Plans?

A business plan template will be made available to teams online and will be described in the Business Plan Workshop scheduled in early spring.

What types of in-kind support will be made available to the winners in each round of competition?

Depending on the nature of the business ideas, we will introduce the winning teams to industry experts and entrepreneurial support organizations that can provide assistance in developing prototypes, conducting proof of concept, conducting market research, protecting intellectual property, recruiting additional team members, and connecting winners with mentors.

For more information, contact Dr. Jacqueline Khorassani at or 740.376.4621.