Get ready to compete: Syracuse students invited to apply for three national and global competitions this fall

female student inventor

Syracuse University student innovators can apply to three prestigious national and global competitions this fall with combined cash prizes of nearly $500,000. Applications are now open for the Lemelson-MIT Student Prize for top inventors, the Queen’s Entrepreneur’s Competition considered the premier student entrepreneurship competition in Canada, and the Baylor New Venture Competition, one of the largest student competitions in the country, with a prize package of $250,000. Deadlines are coming up soon, so keep reading for more details. The LaunchPad team is available to help you with your application and to get you ready to compete on the global stage.

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Syracuse students are invited to compete in the upcoming 2021 Lemelson-MIT Student Prize with application deadline of September 25, 2020. The competition recognizes students at any U.S. college or university who have tested prototypes of technology-based inventions in healthcare, food/water and agriculture, transportation and mobility, and consumer devices and products. Teams of undergraduate students must apply with one invention and individual graduate students must apply with two or more inventions. Inventions are not limited to class projects or thesis work, and any side/personal projects could also be considered. Patents are encouraged but not required. In each of the four categories, undergraduate team winners are awarded $10k and graduate student winners are awarded $15k. In addition, winners receive a national media campaign and exposure to investment and business communities.

The online initial application has minimal requirements and is due by September 25, 2020. Students should review the Application Info Packet for complete details about the application process and eligibility requirements.

Students must have a tested prototype of a technology-based invention that fits into one of the four prize categories:

  • “Cure it!” for inventions that involve healthcare
  • “Eat it!” for inventions that involve food/water or agriculture
  • “Move it!” for inventions that involve transportation or mobility
  • “Use it!” for inventions that involve consumer devices or products

All 2021 Student Prize applicants must be full-time, matriculated, degree-seeking students in the fall semester of 2020 at any U.S. college or university.

Winners will be notified in late February 2021 and awards will be made at EurekaFest, held in 2021 (dates TBD).

Janell Ciemiecki, Awards Program Administrator, Lemelson-MIT Program, MIT School of Engineering is happy to set up a phone call or Zoom with any interested students who would like to discuss the competition further.  Her contact info is or 617-258-5798.

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The Queen’s Entrepreneurs’ Competition (QEC) invites applications from Syracuse University undergraduate student innovators. With $80,000 in prizes, The New York Times calls it “one of the longest-running and best-known undergraduate business plan competitions in the world.”

The QEC is student-run and judged by executives from companies such as Google, CIBC, and Accenture. Located in the heart of Toronto, Ontario, the competition attracts attendees from some of the largest investment firms and corporations. The competition is open to all undergraduate students with an entrepreneurial business. It is considered Canada’s premier undergraduate student competition.

Every year, the competition receives applications internationally, from undergraduate students at schools such as Harvard, Yale, University of Waterloo, The University of Hong Kong, and The National University of Singapore.  This year, event organizers are personally inviting students from Syracuse University to apply to QEC. The competition covers all industries and is an exceptional opportunity to kickstart and develop an entrepreneurial initiative.  It runs from January 14-16, 2021.

To apply, submit a 3-5 page business plan, and an optional 5 minute recorded presentation vvia e-mail to  Early bird submission is October 9 and the regular deadline is October 23.  Judges will select 15 teams to pitch in a final round to business leaders and investors for the prize packages.

For more information, visit and if you have questions, feel free to contact Jake Rakusin, The Queen’s Entrepreneurs’ Competition, 647-982-9880 /

Syracuse University students are invited to compete in the $250,000 Baylor New Venture Competition.  Applications are now open for the tenth annual Baylor New Venture Competition at Baylor University’s Foster Campus for Business and Innovation. This business plan and elevator pitch competition showcases collegiate entrepreneurs from across the globe. The competition provides participants with personal and professional development through industry-specific mentorship towards sustainable business plans, exclusive access to accomplished experts and fellow innovators, and a chance to compete for over $250,000 in cash prizes and vital resources.

The competition is open to all university students and recent alumni. There is no limit to the number of teams from a single university that may apply. To be eligible for the competition, teams must: have two to four members; be current students (undergraduate or graduate) or have graduated May 2019 or later; have at least one member that is a current full-time university undergraduate or graduate student anywhere in the world; have team members that hold fundamental, equity-holding positions within the company and have a combined ownership of at least 25% of the founder’s equity in the company.

For further information on team eligibility, visit the 2021 Official Guidebook for details.

Apply on-line here.  Applications are being accepted through November 1 with the following schedule:

  • September 1, 2020, Entry Period Opens
  • November 1, 2020, Executive Summary Deadline (11:59 p.m. Central Time)
  • December 4, 2020, Announcement of Top 50 Teams Advancing
  • January 4, 2021, Business Plan Submission Deadline (11:59 p.m. Central Time)
  • February 5, 2021, Announcement of Top 10 Finalist Teams
  • March 25-27, 2021, Baylor New Venture Competition at Baylor University

Questions about the competition can be addressed here and more information can be found here.