2016 Hatchpad People's Choice Awards_how it works

Venture Competitions

If you’re a young entrepreneur looking for the next challenge, funding opportunity, or just wanting to change the world then check out these competitions and programs.

HatchPad People’s Choice Student Startup Awards 2017

Are you a co-founder 25 years or younger and have an active, legally formed startup? Are you working with an awesome co-founding team? If so, consider entering in HatchPad’s People’s Choice Student Startup Awards where your company has the opportunity to win a $2,500 business grant during the virtual competition. HPC Awards offers participants a way to gain visibility among our audience and our judging panel and to receive feedback and cash awards.

AWARD LEVELS

  • $2,500 Grand Prize in one of the two categories
    • For-profit
    • Nonprofit

HOW IT WORKS

The Awards Program will take place in a series of rounds:

ROUND 1: VENTURE PAGE CREATION AND SOCIAL CURRENCY

Format: Virtual via HatchPad.co

Deadline: January 31st

Components:

  • Create and publish a complete venture page and profile on HatchPad.co. Include all team members, any PitchIn Requests, and a short 2 minute (more or less) video pitch about your solution. This is not an investor pitch (you will do that in Round 2) but rather a pitch to potential customers.  Make sure to answer all questions on the venture page, include links to your website and social media channels, and check for spelling and grammar.
  • Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram
  • Share your campaign on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, tag us, and include #hatchpadawards
  • Follow us on Snapchat (HatchPad) and share a snap of your page with us and your followers
  • Gain 20+ REAL followers on your Venture Page. Followers are different than “likes.” Email addresses must be REAL. Any bouncebacks, Mailinator or other spam accounts will not be counted.
  • Your startup will be evaluated using the following rubric:
    1. Meets all Rules (see below)
    2. Social Currency Criteria
    3. Quality of Video and Venture Page
    4. Overall Feasibility of Startup
    5. Potential Market Size/Social Impact

If you make the cut, you will proceed to Round 2. You will be notified on February 1st.

ROUND 2: BUSINESS MODEL VALIDATION

Format: Via HatchPad.co’s competition and judging platform partner

Deadline: February 24th

Components:

  • Complete Round 2 Venture Questionnaire. This questionnaire will be private and for the judging panel only. Questionnaire will include the following:
    1. Target Market
    2. Competitors
    3. Marketing Strategy, Scalability, Cost Per Aquisition, Lifetime Value
    4. Financials
    5. Social Impact
    6. Business Partner Eco-System
    7. Team
    8. Uploads (investor pitch deck, executive summary)
  • Create and submit 5-minute video investor pitch. This pitch will be private and for the judging panel only.
  • Answer questions that may come from the judging panel.

QUICK FAQ

Categories

For-profit

  • Digital technology including video and social technology platforms
  • Virtual Reality
  • eHealth and Wellness Technology
  • Wearable Devices for Safety
  • Manufacturing including 3D Printing and Design
  • Consumer/Retail
  • E-Learning

Non-profit

  • Sustainability & Environment
  • Education
  • Health
  • Technology

Age

13 to 25 years old as of January 1, 2017. For participants 16 – 13, we require a signed parental permission form to enter. Please email us.

Prize Levels

For-Profit Category

  • 1st Place—$2,500

Nonprofit Category

  • 1st Place—$2,500

Judges: Virtual Competition

  • Cristin Frodella, Global Head Marketing, Google for Education
  • Danielle Strachman, Founding Partner, 1517 Fund
  • Renee Farmer, Managing Partner, Rainmaker Capital
  • John Euliano, Angel Investor and leader in education
  • Barbara Raho, Angel Investor and one of the founders of Urban Outfitters
  • Holly Zimmerman, Managing Director, Golden Seeds
  • Mario Ciampi, Partner, Prentice Capital and former President The Disney Store
  • Aaron Easaw, Managing Director, Ace Capital

Judges: Live Competition

To be announced closer to the competition dates

Previous Winners

Greetale — Greetale is the greeting card company of the future. It’s the 2016 way of sending greeting cards. We make it easier, cheaper, and faster to send greeting cards with your own handwriting inside them right from your phone.

Esusu — Crowdsourced savings for communities

Geographic Coverage

The United States only at this time.

Rules

  • You must be a US citizen or legal resident with a valid social security number.
  • Your company must be a legally formed entity with a Federal Tax ID number in the United States
  • You must be the founder or co-founder of your company as represented on your website and your social profiles.
  • If you are a nonprofit, you must present your IRS Determination letter.
  • You must be between 13 -25 years old as of January 1, 2017. If you are between the ages of 13-16, you will need to have your parents send us an electronic consent form.

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Diamond Challenge

We had an opportunity to chat with Julie Frieswyk, who is currently the manager for Youth Programs at the University of Delaware, meaning she works directly with the Diamond Challenge.  With a wonderfully diverse and interesting story herself, Julie explains that The Diamond Challenge was created by the University of Delaware’s Horn Program in Entrepreneurship as a way to introduce high school students to educational and advancement opportunities.  Part of Julie’s, and the Diamond Challenge’s, dedication to their youth programs stems from the fact that 65% of students in primary school right now will have jobs that don’t currently exist (World Economic Forum).   One particularly great thing for students is that beyond a venture competition, the Diamond program offers courses for students to be able to receive college credit.  “We want to prepare not only this generation but future generations on how to navigate the ever-changing landscape,” Julie says, with unrelenting passion, about the Challenge. On top of this, the Diamond Challenge is a premiere venture competition that is attracting attention from all over the world.  Students can enter into two different categories: Business Concept or Social Venture.  Each with its own individual focus and competition guidelines.  Students must create teams and a pitch presentation and are connected with mentors and assistance along every step of the way competing for a share of the $100,000 in grant, scholarship, and prize money.  

Diamond Challenge

Diamond Challenge

Age

Student’s must be enrolled in some form of secondary education

Category Focus

Students can enter either into two different sections: Business Concept or Social Venture

Timing

Registration Open Sept. 1st, 2016-Nov. 27th, 2016

Prize Levels

Semifinalists—Trip to University of Delaware with $500 Prize plus travel expenses ($1000 award)

1st Place—$10,000

2nd Place—$6,500

3rd Place—$3,500

Judges

Vary across a wide realm of fields

Judging Rounds

3 rounds, all pitch based

Live Event Component?

All Semifinalists travel to University of Delaware to present in person and finalists are given the opportunity to present at the Youth Entrepreneurship Summit

Previous Winners

Retracta-Ball Pump—a sports pump with a retractable needle to save from damage or loss

Modern Reflections—creating clothing with a reflective nature that can be viewed from up 70 m away to save pedestrian traffic incidents

Geographic Coverage

Open to anyone in the world (so bring your A-game)

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National Business Plan Competition

National Business Pan Competition Flyer 2016

National Business Pan Competition Flyer 2016

Though the title of this event seems pretty self-explanatory there is actually a lot more that surrounds this Business Plan competition than may meet the eye.  Presented by HSBC, this competition is done in coordination with the Youth Business Summit, which is a global, world-class event held in New York City each year.  The National Business Plan Competition (NBPC for short) is an opportunity built specifically for high school students to put their heads together and create something really special.  The NBPC asks students to present their ideas to a panel of judges, putting together an advanced presentation and convincing the judging panel that their idea is developed enough and valid to continue to move forward.  In a later round of the competition, teams are paired with experienced business mentors to assist them as they move forward.  The competition culminates each summer in New York City at the Youth Business Summit where teams present to a huge crowd of their peers and judges for finals honors.

Age

High School Students

Category Focus

No particular category focus

Timing

Occurs during the Youth Business Summit, April 3-5, 2017

Prize Levels

Top 6 Teams receive direct connection to business

Judges

Varied number of Industry professionals and educators

Judging Rounds

3 rounds, narrowing down to Top 6

Live Event Component?

It’s all done live and in person at the Youth Business Summit

Previous Winners

This competition is narrowed down to the Top 6 most feasible designs

Geographic Coverage

Open to students from around the World

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i.Invest Competition

i.Invest Competition

i.Invest Competition

The full name says it all: The i.Invest National Youth Entrepreneur Business Competition.  This competition is built for youth entrepreneurs between the ages of 13 and 19 to showcase their innovative spirit. When we asked Michelle Jackson, founder and executive director of i.Invest, what makes her so passionate about this competition she responded, “We are filling the gaps in entrepreneurship education.  We want to expose as many young people as possible to entrepreneurship and the entrepreneurial mindset and to give opportunities to students who are already thinking outside of the box in school.”

Students who compete in this competition have the potential to win seed funding and connections to financial investors, mentors and coaches with a wide depth of experience, and the possibility for a variety of cash and in-kind prizes.  Michelle makes sure to highlight the connection with mentors that are available for students: “All of our participants are required to take part in online coaching/mentorship sessions.  But that’s the bare minimum, many of our coaches/mentors are available to the students whenever they have questions or need assistance.  They are really passionate about helping these kids succeed.”   

The prizes for the winners are not to be trifled with either as they present valuable learning experiences, like consultations with a PR firm about their marketing strategy or consultations with a law firm for a special “Ask-an-Attorney” session.  i.Invest is really about ushering in the next generation of entrepreneurs and innovation and the perfect opportunity for any budding idea.

Age

Students age 13-19

Category Focus

No particular category but students must have more than a concept (something ‘tangible’ even if that is an app or website)

Timing

Applications for 2016 are closed but check back in December 2016 for the 2017 application submission information.

Prize Levels

Top winners will receive a combination of both cash prizes and in-kind prizes.  This includes consultations with law firms and PR firms to really give students the next level help and information they ned.

Judges

Judges include university professors and executives from a variety of companies across the country, from companies you may have heard of, like Google.

Judging Rounds

There are 3 rounds, including online coaching/mentoring sessions.

Live Event Component?

The third round consists of the top finalists pitching during a virtual pitch competition.

Previous Winners

i.Invest is almost brand new so we suggest checking them out before they really blow up on the scene (we can sense it’s coming so get ready)

Geographic Coverage

The competition is based out of New Orleans but is open to applicants from around the country.

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Make Your Job

The Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship has partnered with The Citi Foundation to create this unique learning experience.  Make Your Job is an online experience made to teach students how to have an innovative and entrepreneurial mindset in the ever-changing 21st century landscape.  Utilizing a game and reward-based system that integrates learning along with  peer advice and support, and videos featuring world-class experts, Make Your Job isn’t necessarily your run of the mill venture competition, in fact it’s not really much of a competition at all, but an integrated learning platform for the next generation of game-changers.  We’re waiting to see what next great idea comes out of this program, unfortunately it’s only available in about 10 cities currently.

Make Your Job by Citi Foundation

Make Your Job by Citi Foundation

Age

Pre-college students (may not be enrolled in college)

Category Focus

Students can enter in everything from Fashion and Visual Arts, to Communication, to Technology (what we’re saying is they are very open)

Timing

Rolling application but the program happens during the summer (it is a full-length program)

Prize Levels

1st, 2nd, and 3rd place have the opportunity to win up to $7,500, depending on the region and sponsorship

Judges

Partnering with The Citi Foundation has brought about some top level judges, from Amazon, Google, and even Apple

Judging Rounds

Focused more on the educational component, there is only one final round of judging to decide the winners

Live Event Component?

Previous Winners

Gaming, Apps for other language users, and smart-tech

Geographic Coverage

Open to submission from around the world but only happening in certain cities (which they are expanding so check back soon for a full list)

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Google Science Fair

Don’t get this confused with your middle-school science fair full of attempts at replica volcanoes (we’ve all been there), we had a chance to chat with co-founder Cristin Frodella about the opportunities coming out of the Google Science Fair.  This online science and technology competition is for the best and brightest between the ages of 13 and 18 “who are asked to change the world through scientific inquiry” says Cristin.  “We really saw the power in creating this opportunity for students because they don’t understand the term ‘impossible’ and therefore think up some of the most brilliant ideas” Cristin talking about why Google seized the opportunity for this venture and its focus on young people.  Boasting a huge list of prizes for competitors from around the world, the Grand Prize winner receives $50,000 in scholarship money.  But what makes the Google Science Fair so special isn’t the prize money, it’s the environment.  Cristin spoke with a great deal of enthusiasm saying “When finalists come to Google HQ for the final round, the competition usually takes a backseat to the positive community and learning.  Students get to see Google, have interactive classes and learning opportunities, and get to interact with one another.  We have people who met at our very first competition and are still friends, despite being from other sides of the world.”  Google is giving away scholarship money left and right and connecting these students with some of the industries top mentors as well as one another.  Commitment to the Generation Z and the future of the world. We see you Google.

Google Science Fair

Google Science Fair

Age

Open to students age 13-18

Category Focus

The competition is divided into 2 categories, with subcategories in each, but it is at it’s truest form, a science fair

Timing

Applications for 2016 are currently closed but will open again in early 2017

Prize Levels

The Grand Prize winner receives $50,000 in scholarship money but Google has partnered with some equally powerful entities like National Geographic and Virgin Galactic to bring a laundry list of awards that include perks and plenty of scholarship money

Judges

Judges are some of the top professionals from some of the competitions partner companies, people like Chief Astronaut Instructor from Virgin Galactic and the Editor-in-Chief of Scientific American (we know, it’s casual)

Judging Rounds

2 rounds of online judging, culminating in the World final

Live Event Component?

The World final round students are flown to Google HQ for a few days of community, education, and inspiration with their peers

Previous Winners

Last year’s winner created a new diagnostic test for Ebola that doesn’t require refrigeration and gives results within 30 minutes (oh yeah, she was 17 when she did it too).

Geographic Coverage

Open to students from around the world

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The Imagine Cup

The Imagine Cup

The Imagine Cup

We know it sounds like something out of a kids book or Harry Potter, but don’t let the name fool you because the students that compete in the Imagine Cup are not to be trifled with.  Presented by Microsoft, this competition is focused on developing new technology, specifically within the realms of Games, Innovation, and World Citizenship (those are the three categories).  Student’s create teams of four and come up with an idea, plan, build, and ultimately execute, the only stipulation is that teams have to utilize some form of Microsoft technology to do so.  Wondering what you get out of all of this?  Well all finalists win a free trip to Seattle (who doesn’t want to stick a piece of gum on the wall) but the winners of each of the three main categories win $50,000.  How about that to sweeten the deal?

Age

16 years or older

Category Focus

Technology (but there are three sub-categories)

Timing

This year’s competition has already passed but registration will open early 2017

Prize Levels

All World-Finalists win a trip to Seattle and the 1st Place team in each category wins $50,000

Judge

Top level professionals from Microsoft

Judging Rounds

2 online judging rounds, culminating in World Finals in Seattle

Live Event Component?

All World Finalists will be flown to Seattle to give a live presentation

Previous Winners

This past years winner ENTy created a wearable technology that tracks inner ear balance and spinal posture, oh yeah, it’s also the size of a house key (need we say more)

Geographic Coverage

Worldwide, with the exception of a few countries (see official rules)

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The Thiel Fellowship

Thiel Fellowship

Thiel Fellowship

This not exactly a venture competition in so many words but if major change is what you’re after, along with a supportive community, and additional grant-based funding, then check it out.  The Thiel fellowship is a two-year program that students either leave or skip college/university for.  This tight-knit community will help you build your team, get additional funding, and gain valuable real-life experience and knowledge.  What’s more?  Almost all of the fellows are 22 or younger and all of the businesses that have been created here have gone on to amass a collective $1.1 billion.  So if you’re interested in changing the world, let the Thiel Fellowship program help you.

Age

Students who are 22 yo or YOUNGER

Category Focus

None, you just have to have something that’s going to spark change

Timing

They accept rolling applications which means that brilliant idea you just had is a “go now,” two months from now, or a year (as long as you’re still not 23)

Prize Levels

Thiel awards students with a 2-year $100,000 grant to stop everything else and work on their project

Judges

This isn’t a competition so take a deep breath.

Judging Rounds

Now Exhale.

Live Event Component?

The live event is life.  The fellowship requires you drop out of school or whatever you are doing and work on your idea/project

Previous Winners

Solar-powered water purification systems (SunSaluter), powerful, award-winning apps (Workflow), and even a cultural magazine for young people (REAL), as well as Hatcher friend Stacy Ferreira, just to name a few

Geographic Coverage

Open to everyone (though it is recommended you move to San Francisco if you get it)

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The Hult Prize

The Hult Prize

The Hult Prize

This is a start-up accelerator of which the likes you have never seen before.  The Hult Prize is meant to be specifically for teams who are working on a venture in the realm of social entrepreneurship.  Each year the committee selects a different world issue and the best ventures to help deal with that social issues, in some way shape or form, are the ones that make the final.  Why is it so incredibly different?  The Hult Prize partners with former US President Bill Clinton and the Clinton Global Initiative to offer $1,000,000 in prize money.  Oh we may have also forgotten to mention that this prize has been called “the Nobel Peace Prize for students,” and that a few of the judges on the panel are former Nobel Peace Prize winners.  We should mention award is aimed mainly at students in college or university, but they aren’t opposed to having someone younger if the idea is there.

Age

College and University students

Category Focus

Social Good, category of focus changes each year

Timing

Registration will be open October 7th, 2016-December 18th, 2016

Prize Levels

The winning team receives $1 million in funding

Judges

Feature Fortune 500 execs and Nobel Prize winners

Judging Rounds

Two rounds of competitions with an incubator session in between

Live Event Component?

Teams must attend a regional event in order to present their idea, if they make it to the next round they must attend the incubator in Boston, and then the Global Finals Ceremony

Previous Winners

The 2013 winner, Aspire Food Group, not only created a solution to the Global Food Crisis but created an entire new industry

Geographic Coverage

This competition attracts the best of the best from around the world

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The Paradigm Challenge

The Paradigm Challenge

The Paradigm Challenge

Solving world problems and global challenges seems like the standard these days.  The Paradigm challenge focuses on students between the ages of 4 and 18 (don’t worry, there are subcategories within this broad age category) with STEM education to try and create creative solutions to reduce waste in homes, schools, communities and around the world.  The one grand prize winning team will win $100,000 in college scholarship money in order to further their education and in hopes to continue to work on their solution to reduce waste, not to mention the four other prize levels and the opportunity for a trip to Los Angeles (in style, with Tux/Dress rental for the awards ceremony).  Hey Jlaw, we’ll see your red carpet and raise you a solution to world issues.

Age

Divided into three age categories: 4-8, 9-13, and 14-18

Category Focus

The paradigm challenge alternates topics but this year is about reducing waste

Timing

The deadline to enter is May 1st, 2017

Prize Levels

The Grand Prize winner (or team) will receive $100,000, and there are additional prizes for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd runner up, starting at $5,000

Judges

They have put together an expert panel of judges with experience in social wellness

Judging Rounds

2 rounds, including a public voting round of the judge selected finalists

Live Event Component?

The top three teams will win an all-expense paid trip to Los Angeles to the final gala

Previous Winners

This challenge is brand new so jump on it before it goes huge

Geographic Coverage

Open to the world, with exception of a few countries (see FAQs for more details)

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The Stockholm Award

Looking to take your idea onto the international level?  Ever wanted to check out Sweden?  Well the opportunity to go global is right here with the Stockholm Award.  Though the challenge specifically focuses on the development of Stockholm itself, the outcomes are applicable beyond this realm.  The challenge focuses on four different areas of development, divided into two categories.  Participants must create a cohesive plan to fit into the development of one of the four key areas.  Not only is there prize money but also the winners idea will be directly implemented in the future of Stockholm.  Talk about having a direct impact.

Age

Must be 18 years or older

Category Focus

The two categories are: Financially Sustainable and Climate-Smart Stockholm and Cohesive and Democratically sustainable Stockholm

Timing

Unfortunately applications are only being accepted for the “Cohesive and Democratically Sustainable” category still

Prize Levels

The winners will share 100,000 SEK

Judges

The city of Stockholm has appointed a panel of secret judges (so European of them)

Judging Rounds

They will select the top 6 finalists in the two categories

Live Event Component?

There is a ceremony to choose the winner for each challenge

Previous Winners

This is a brand new competition for the future of Stockholm, be a part of one of the most known cities in the world

Geographic Coverage

Open to participants worldwide

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Built By Girls Challenge

Built By Girls Challenge

Built By Girls Challenge

These ladies are coming for you, and they are not playing any kind of games.  The Built by Girls group is working to inspire and build the next generation of young women, particularly helping with education.  This challenge has two tracks, girls who have a tech-based startup that could be the next big thing or an idea that could change the face of girls education.  Girls must be between ages 15 and 18 but the narrow age range is nothing when it’s the opportunity of a lifetime.  This competition is for girls, judged by girls, and about #girlpower, with the opportunity for a once-in-a-lifetime trip to San Francisco.  Okay ladies now let’s get in formation.  (p.s. They have a great internship program for rising college fresh(wo)man, check it out)

Age

Girls, age 15-18

Category Focus

Two categories: Next big tech startup or next big change in girls education

Timing

Unfortunately this year’s application JUST closed but come back in August of next year for your chance

Prize Levels

Finalists get a trip to San Francisco and the winners all receive funding, mentorship, and a booth at TechCrunch Disrupt

Judges

The panel is comprised of the 17 year old girls who participated in the “Girls Who Fund” internship

Judging Rounds

2 rounds, with the second being the time in San Francisco

Live Event Component?

Did we mention San Francisco is part of the deal for finalists?

Previous Winners

This is a new competition so check back soon to see what they are bringing to the table

Geographic Coverage

Open to U.S. residents only

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Startup Weekend

Startup Weekend

Startup Weekend

So this isn’t so much a competition as an idea-brainstorming-think-tank kind of event.  Startup Weekends are being hosted around the world and they are meant for everyone and anyone interested.  It’s a 54-hour event to pitch your idea, build a team, build your product, and present to a panel of judges and peers.  Some of the Startup weekends have a particular focus like food and energy or civic solutions but majority of them are just broad topic startups.  They each boast a host of local mentors and coaches, experienced speakers and professionals, and incredible work-space.  The goal is to help students network and create the beginnings of their product or idea.  Sounds like something we would love to be a part of, and so should you.

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