Entrepreneurship Competitions

UVa Darden Business Plan Competition

With over $90,000 in entrepreneurial funds awarded annually, Darden provides MBA students multiple opportunities to pitch their businesses ideas to investors, peers, faculty, alumni, business leaders and the broader UVA entrepreneurial ecosystem. Darden's competitions are structured to encourage collaboration and cross-pollination of ideas across a broad range of disciplines and schools university-wide.

Concept Competition

$5,000 awarded at each of eight schools across UVA, $3,000 for each first prize winner

Darden's first major competition each year is the Concept Competition. Hands-on workshops leading up to the competition will cover the topics of visualization, systems thinking, empathy, journey mapping and reframing. These workshops will enable students to collaborate across a wide range of disciplines, providing multiple opportunities for students to cross-pollinate business ideas within a design-thinking framework.

UVA Entrepreneurship Cup

$40,000 awarded in total, $20,000 for first prize

The UVa Entrepreneurship Cup is a university-wide concept competition. Individual schools within the University of Virginia each hold their own concept competitions, and then the winners from each of these individual concept competitions come together to compete in a cross-university competition called the UVA E-Cup that will put winners against winners to decide the ultimate entrepreneurial concept champion of the year for the entire University of Virginia.

Effectual De-Risking Competition

$5,000 awarded in total, $3,000 for first prize

Darden's new Effectual De-Risking Competition is based on the principles of effectuation and teaches students to create their business concept with self-selected stakeholders while reducing the risks associated with launching their new business. Darden's final competition of the academic year is the revamped "Business Plan 2.0" Competition which reflects the practices of real-world investors.

Business Plan Competition 2.0

$15,500 awarded in total, $10,000 for first prize

Th Business Plan Competition 2.0 features student pitches that demonstrate the value of the business, capturing the elements of a business plan in a high-impact power point, video, and executive-summary based format.

Venture Capital Investment Competition

The Venture Capital Investment Competition is an annual international venture capital competition run by UNC Kenan-Flagler. Darden has hosted the Southeast Regional and sends its own team to compete in the VCIC regional on another campus.

Strategic Competition Initiative

Darden will sponsor a qualified number of student teams to attend certain strategic competitions in the areas of entrepreneurship and innovation. Contact MJ Toms for more information.

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