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Washington State University Entrepreneurship

FAQ

The time, insight, and expertise you share with our students form a valuable part of the transformative learning we endeavor to provide at WSU.

BPC Event Schedule

BPC FAQs

General 

Why should I compete in BPC? 

  • Participating in BPC gives student entrepreneurs the opportunity to practice business in a real-world setting, showcase their business acumen, and network with industry professionals. 

Will BPC be virtual or in-person this year? 

  • BPC 2022 will be a hybrid format. Both the Screening Round and Presentation Round will be done virtually followed by an in-person trade show, final presentation round, and awards dinner & ceremony.  

What are the different competition rounds? 

Collegiate & Open Leagues 

  1. Screening Round – Judges score a 1-page executive summary, the top 24 Collegiate and 5 Open League teams advance from the Screening Round to the Presentation Round 
  2. Presentation Round – Teams submit a full business plan, financial statements, and a pitch deck. Collegiate teams are divided into 5 leagues with an additional Open League for presentations. They will be scored on their plan and their pitch to a panel of judges. The top team from each presentation league will advance to the Final Presentation Round. The winner of the Open League is selected during this round but announced following all rounds of competition at the Awards Dinner.
  3. Final Presentation Round – The top teams from each of the Collegiate Presentation Round leagues will pitch in person to a new panel of judges.

High School League 

  1. Screening Round – Judges score a 1-page executive summary and a 2-minute video, five teams will be selected to advance to the presentation round 
  2. Presentation Round – Teams submit a full business plan and present to a panel of judges. Teams are scored on their written plan and their presentation. 

Who are the judges? 

  • More than 70 entrepreneurs, investors, and professionals representing dozens of industries serve as judges in the Business Plan Competition each year. 

How can I prepare for and learn more about BPC? 

  • Attend our Resource Nights to learn about different aspects of the competition, ask questions, and work on your business!

Eligibility 

Can I have a 1-person team? 

  • Yes, you can compete with a 1-person team if you are a full-time undergraduate student at WSU. However, we do recommend finding teammates as teams should include members possessing the essential background to enable the development of a serious business plan. Interdisciplinary teams are strongly encouraged.  

Do we have to have undergraduates on our team? 

  • Yes to compete in the collegiate league you must have 2 full time WSU undergraduates on your team. 

Who is eligible to compete in the BPC? 

  • Collegiate league is open to ALL WSU students enrolled in the current spring semester. You must have 2 full-time undergraduate students. 
  • High School League is open to all Washington State High School students. 
  • Open League is open to teams who have at least one member currently enrolled student, undergraduate, masters, Ph.D. or professional at one of the following universities: 
    • University of Idaho 
    • Eastern Washington University 
    • Whitworth 
    • Gonzaga
    • Central Washington 
    • Seattle Pacific University 
    • Seattle University 
    • Western Washington University 
    • University of Washington. 
    • University of Oregon
    • Oregon State University
    • North Idaho College
    • Community colleges of Washington and Idaho 

Are graduate students eligible? 

  • Yes, graduate students may be on a team as long as 2 team members are full-time WSU undergraduate students.  

How many people can we have on our team? 

  • There is no limit on the number of members; however, only 4 team members can present in the presentation round. Small teams are recommended 

Prizes 

Who funds BPC and all of the prizes?  

  • BPC has many generous sponsors, learn more about our sponsors. In addition to the overall prizes, some of our sponsors offer merit prizes in specific categories.  

Can I win both an overall prize and a merit prize? 

  • Yes, you can win an overall prize and a merit prize (or even multiple merit prizes).  

How much are the prizes? 

  • COLLEGIATE LEAGUE 
    • Herbert B. Jones Grand Prize – $15,000 
    • Herbert B. Jones Second Place Prize – $10,000 
    • Third Place Prize – $7,000 
    • Fourth Place Prize – $4,000 
    • Fifth Place Prize – $2,000 
  • OPEN COLLEGIATE LEAGUE 
    • Grand Prize – $5,000 
  • HIGH SCHOOL LEAGUE 
    • Herbert B. Jones Grand Prize – $5,000 
    • Second Place Prize – $2,000 
    • Third Place Prize – $1,000 
    • Fourth Place Prize – $500 
    • Fifth Place Prize – $250 
  • MERIT PRIZES 
    • BECU Best FinTech Venture Prize – $5,000 
    • Herbert B. Jones Best Written Plan Prize – $2,500 
    • Herbert B. Jones Best Presentation Prize – $2,500 
    • Herbert B. Jones Best Tech Venture Prize – $2,500 
    • Herbert B. Jones Best Social Impact Venture Prize – $2,500 

Other 

Does WSU own my business idea? 

  • No, you and your team own your business idea.  

I want to compete, but I don’t have a team! 

  • Check our upcoming events for our next teaming event where we help students find a team. If there are no upcoming events contact us and we will support you in building finding a team! 

I have an idea, but I need a team!  

  • Check our upcoming events for our next teaming event where we help students find a team. If there are no upcoming events contact us and we will support you in building your team!  

I want to stay informed; can I sign up for your email list? 

  • Yes please! Sign up for our email distribution list here

For more information

Marie Mayes
Director, Center for Entrepreneurship
509-335-5628
mmayes@wsu.edu

 

team at awards dinner
Pure Ear Products team chatting with BPC judge Garth Mader at the 2019 Awards Dinner