The annual Idaho Entrepreneur Challenge, hosted by the Venture College and the College of Innovation and Design, is a statewide competition in which student entrepreneurs from Idaho universities and colleges pitch their business ideas competing for prize money, business services, and feedback from experts and mentors.
The challenge will take place April 1-2. For the first time, the competition and awards ceremony will take place at Jack’s Urban Meeting Place (JUMP) in downtown Boise. The deadline to apply is Feb. 15.
Competition organizers will award a total of $50,000, plus that much in-kind in the form of legal and financial advice from business experts said Nic Miller, director of the Venture College. Some winners will receive office space in the Venture College. One winner will automatically qualify for the Boise Startup Week pitch competition later this year.
“Part of what we’re trying to do is make sure we can give students not only the funds to advance competitively, but the additional support they need,” Miller said.
Moving the competition to JUMP this year will help showcase students’ work in the community beyond campus, he added. The competition will include a display of the competing teams and their business ideas that will be open to the public.
Boise State winners from 2019 include Simu Daktari, a telemedicine service that brings affordable healthcare services to families living in rural Kenya who otherwise are unable to access quality healthcare services, and Free to Feed, creator of a device that lets mothers screen their breast milk for common allergen proteins. Lumineye, another successful Boise State-born company, took home the top prize in technology in 2018.