Apply to compete in the regional qualifier for the New York Business Plan Competition

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Applications are now open through March 15 to graduate and undergraduate students from across Central New York colleges and universities for Compete CNY, the regional qualifier for the New York Business Plan Competition (NYBPC) on March 25. The regional qualifier will be hosted by the Blackstone LaunchPad at Syracuse University, with judges who are regional business and community leaders.  Top regional teams will be selected to compete at the state level finals, “Venture NY” featuring the New York State Business Plan Competition offering prize money and post-program mentorship.

Students from regional colleges and universities should apply here for the competition.  Be sure to select Central New York as your region.  Syracuse University students should also apply through the LaunchPad’s common app for all campus competitions, including the RvD iPrize and Hunter Brooks Watson Spirit of Entrepreneurship Award competition which are held concurrently with Compete CNY.  The Syracuse University common app is this on-line portal.

Compete CNY is open to any full-time or part-time undergraduate or graduate student enrolled in an accredited college or university in the Central New York Region (Cayuga, Cortland, Madison, Onondaga, and Oswego Counties). Cumulative public and private capital raised may not exceed $100,000, excluding research funding that may have supported the development of the technology in an academic setting.

The Central New York regional qualifier is open to students from: 

  • Bryant and Stratton Business College
  • Cazenovia College
  • Cayuga Community College
  • Colgate University
  • Crouse-Irving Memorial Hospital School of Nursing
  • Keuka-Onondaga Community College
  • LeMoyne College
  • Onondaga Community College
  • St. Joseph’s College of Nursing
  • SUNY Cortland
  • SUNY Morrisville
  • SUNY Oswego
  • SUNY Upstate Medical University
  • Syracuse University
  • Wells College

Top teams in six different vertical tracks will be selected at regional qualifiers to move on to the statewide competition which is coordinated by The Upstate Capital Foundation and The Upstate Capital Association of New York.  This year, for the first time ever, the state finals on April 27 will be held in Syracuse.  The finals will feature winners of regional competitions in New York’s ten geographic zones – Capital Region, Central New York, North Country, Mohawk Valley, Finger Lakes, Western New York, Southern Tier, Mid-Hudson, New York City and Long Island.

Student startups will be asked to select from tags to help organize them into competition categories:

Tags Selections:

Sectors – (choose all that apply): Defense, Energy First Responder, Infrastructure, Mobility & Transportation, Education, Health IT, Life Science, Medtech, Wellbeing, Agricultural Technology, Food Product, Food Service, Entertainment, Gaming, Media, Art, Other

Business Types – (choose all that apply) Software, Hardware, Product, Service, Other B2B Solutions, Other B2C Solutions

Other Tags – (choose all that apply): BIPOC (Black and Indigenous People of Color), Female Founder, First-Generation College Student, Immigrant Founder, LGBTQIA+, Social Entrepreneurship, Undergraduate, Veteran-Owned, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Blockchain & Cryptocurrency, Circular Economy, Climate Tech/Environmental Impact, Concept Stage, COVID Response, Internet of Things (IoT), Machine Learning (ML), Patentable, Venture-Backable

About the New York Business Plan Competition:

The NYBPC provides opportunities for students enrolled in colleges and universities across New York to gain entrepreneurial skills and compete on their ingenuity, first on campus, then in the region, and for top teams, the statewide finals. The program has created over $150M+ economic impact including follow-on funding for 150+ startups.

Please refer to the NYBPC website to find the most current information: