Innovation is about creating solutions for challenging problems. The Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) sector covers everything It’s a different way of thinking – you break past the barriers of what currently exists and create a new normal.
Here are a few business product ideas to spark your creativity:
- Mobile app
- Software product
- Hardware product
- Internet company
- Product or service based on scientific research
- September 30: Register Team
- October 31: Submit Application
- November 9: Finalists Notified
- November 26: BizTech Pitch Day
- November 27: Check Presentation
- Must attend a Historically Black College and University (HBCU) in Louisiana: Dillard University, Grambling State University, Southern University and A&M College, Southern University at New Orleans, Southern University at Shreveport, or Xavier University of Louisiana
- Register as an individual or a team.
- Teams are limited to no more than 5 people.
- Teams may enter only one idea or concept.
- Pitch competitors may participate in only one team.
- Teams must designate a team leader to submit the final application.
- Only team members are allowed to pitch and answer questions.
- University IP may be presented; however, students must fully understand and be able to explain the technology. They must state in the presentation that they are presenting university IP rather than an original idea.
Intellectual Property (IP) used as the basis of the solution must be created by the students on the team.
However, it can be based on prior work as long as the solution addresses the challenge specifications.
The only exception to this policy is for projects that find a commercialization path for University IP.
If using University IP, the students should be able to describe the invention knowledgeably, and also include a slide that explains that the IP belongs to the University.
Teams are required to select a faculty coach to help prepare them for the pitch competition. Faculty coaches must confirm their participation in order for the team to receive credit. They will receive an email requesting that they opt-in to participate.
Mentors will be assigned after the team has signed up. Teams are required to meet with their mentor at least twice before submitting their pitch application. Mentors will need to confirm the number of times they’ve met with their team.
Teams also have access to Nexus Louisiana representatives. Please email email@example.com to ensure that you receive a timely response.
Building relationships is an essential component of the BizTech Challenge. Therefore, each team member is required to connect with at least one of the following NexusLA representatives on LinkedIn:
- Calvin Mills, Jr.
Administrative Management Consultant
- Na’Tisha Natt
Director of Community Engagement
- Narcisse Burchell
Programs & Events Manager
Each Team must also make at least 3 posts about the BizTech Challenge and tag NexusLA and your university. Posts should include images or video content that reflects your participation in the #2022BizTechChallenge.
Each team member is also encouraged to connect with their faculty coach, mentor, and other professionals they meet during the BizTech Challenge.
LinkedIn Training (October - Date & Time TBD):
During this virtual training, a LinkedIn expert will share tips on how to find a job, grow your network, and connect with potential employers. Most importantly, you will learn how to refine your brand by building a stand-out LinkedIn profile.
- Determine Your Eligibility
- Form Your Team
- Register Your Team
- Select Your Faculty Coach
- Meet Your Mentor
- Develop & Validate Your Business Idea
- Submit Your Pitch Application
- Qualify for Finals
- Practice Your Pitch
- Compete to WIN!
- Executive Summary (2-5 pages)
- Pitch Deck (PowerPoint or Google Slide Presentation)
- Video of Pitch (3-5 minutes)
- Tech Demonstration (1-2-minutes)
- Student Intake Form (all team members) – Click Here to Complete
- Proof of Mentor Meetings (2)
- Faculty Coach Consent
- University IP Disclosure (if applicable)
Pitch your invention to a panel of judges who are entrepreneurs and professionals from the business, technology, and economic development sectors. Judges will evaluate all submissions and select the top 5 teams to compete in the finals.
Judges will score based on the following categories:
- Business Model
- Customer & Market Validation
Each finalist team will receive:
- A $200 travel voucher to cover meals, gas, and parking.
- Up to 3 complimentary hotel rooms.
Overnight hotel accommodations will be reserved as follows:
- Thursday, August 25 - Sunday, August 28
- Grambling State University
- Southern University at Shreveport
- Thursday, August 25 - Saturday, August 27
- Southern University and A&M College
*Teams within commuting distance will not receive hotel accommodations.
The winning teams will receive the following cash prizes, split equally amongst the team members.
- Top 3 three teams will win cash prizes totaling $15,000.
- 1st place winner will split a grand prize of up to $10,000.
- All winners will receive a 6-month in-person or virtual membership to the NexusLA Tech Park.
- Faculty Coaches must notify NexusLA of all changes in the allocation of prize money.
- Winners may be required to submit a W9 to receive cash award.
- Taxes are the sole responsibility of the recipient.