Eighteen state colleges and universities will be represented in the 2019-2020 West Virginia Statewide Collegiate Business Plan Competition semifinals, with a total of 31 teams moving onto the next stage of the competition.
Semifinalist colleges and universities include Alderson Broaddus University, Bluefield State College, Blueridge Community & Technical College, Concord University, Davis & Elkins College, Fairmont State University, Glenville State College, Marshall University, Ohio Valley University, Pierpont Community & Technical College, Potomac State College, Shepherd University, University of Charleston, West Liberty University, West Virginia State University, West Virginia University, West Virginia Wesleyan College and WVU Institute of Technology.
“Based on the vote from the BPC Oversight Committee last year, we moved the top 10 scores from each category onto the semifinals and the additional teams were the top scores from institutions that were not represented,” said Tara St. Clair, program lead of the Encova Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at West Virginia University’s John Chambers College of Business and Economics. “The goal of this was to be more inclusive and provide better representation from across the state.”
A $10,000 grand prize awaits the winner in both the STEM & Innovation and Lifestyle & Hospitality categories.
An additional at-large award of $20,000 is made possible by Ray Zinn, founder of Micrel Semiconducters and the longest-serving CEO in Silicon Valley. This is the third year that Zinn gave money to the business plan competition. He gave $10,000 to the event each year over the last two years.
The LaunchLab Network of applied innovation centers for students is part of the WVU Innovation, Design and Entrepreneurship Applied Ecosystem, a university-wide web of centers, offices and programs that fosters and supports innovation and entrepreneurship among WVU students, faculty and staff while engaging the statewide community.
Other areas include IDEA Faculty Fellows, WVU Women’s Business Center, Davis Young Innovators program, WVU Extension Service, Encova Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Patent and Trademark Resource Center, Health Sciences Innovation Center, Legal Clinics, Media Innovation Center, Manufacturing Extension Partnership, the MakerLab and Technology Transfer.
Semifinals will be held Jan. 31, 2020 at Fairmont State University.
Senior Writer, Office of Strategic Communications
John Chambers College of Business and Economics
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