Stillman News Editor
Seton Hall University hosted the fourth annual Big East Startup Challenge, a competition for budding entrepreneurs from Big East universities, on February 16th, 2023. The event was held virtually due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The competition, organized by the Big East Conference and Seton Hall’s Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, brought together student-led startups from 11 Big East universities to compete for a $10,000 grand prize. The event featured keynote speeches, panel discussions, and presentations from the participating teams.
The day began with a welcome address from Seton Hall’s president, Joseph Nyre, who spoke about the importance of entrepreneurship and innovation in the 21st century. Then, the keynote speech was delivered by Michael Strahan, a former NFL player and entrepreneur, who shared his experiences in entrepreneurship and the lessons he has learned along the way.
The competition was divided into two rounds. In the first round, each team had five minutes to pitch their business idea to a panel of judges. The judges included venture capitalists, successful entrepreneurs, and industry experts. The judges evaluated the teams based on the strength of their business plan, market potential, and overall viability. Six teams were selected to advance to the final round, where they could pitch their ideas in more detail and answer questions from the judges. The teams represented various industries, including healthcare, fintech, e-commerce, and social media.
The winning team was SustainaTec, a Providence College startup developing sustainable packaging solutions for the food industry. The team impressed the judges with their innovative approach to reducing waste and deep understanding of the market. They walked away with the $10,000 grand prize and valuable feedback and connections.
The Big East Startup Challenge provides an important platform for student entrepreneurs to showcase their ideas, network with industry experts, and gain valuable experience in pitching and business development. In addition, the event is a testament to the Big East Conference’s commitment to fostering innovation and entrepreneurship among its member universities.
The Center for Entrepreneurial Studies at Seton Hall University is a leader in entrepreneurship education, offering a wide range of programs and resources to help students develop the skills and knowledge needed to start and grow successful businesses. The Big East Startup Challenge is just one of the many ways Seton Hall supports the next generation of entrepreneurs.
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