Westminster Launches On-Campus Business Plan Competition
November 1, 2007
Westminster Launches Its First On-Campus Business Plan Competition. Winning Team to Advance to State Competition for a Chance at $40K
Westminster College’s Institute for New Enterprise in the Bill and Vieve Gore School of Business will launch its first on-campus business plan innovation competition Nov. 1, 2007, with the deadline to register of Dec. 1, 2007.
The competition, called Opportunity Quest, will be co-directed by two Westminster business students, Jason Badell and Jared Hansen. The competition will include a series of events that lead to an awards dinner and cash prizes of up to $5,000. Events include forums and presentations on business plan writing, presentation skills and one-on-one mentorship from college faculty and other local business community leaders.
According to Badell, the winner of the Westminster competition will advance to the Utah Entrepreneur Challenge, the statewide business plan competition open to all college students across the state. More than 200 teams (approximately 600 students) compete each year for cash prizes up to $100,000 and in-kind services to launch their business. The first place winner will receive $40,000 in cash.
In 2002, Westminster College student John Butler won first place in the statewide Entrepreneur Challenge competition for his business plan proposal. He is now the president of Mediaport, a company he started with the support of his winnings.
“The Entrepreneur Challenge played a critical role in helping me develop, refine and test my ideas,” said Butler. “It also taught me that a business plan has to be a guide rather than a blueprint because consumer interests change, technologies evolve, competitors emerge, investors make new demands and you have to adapt to those events in the competition itself and in the real world as well.”
“I feel winning the competition gave me the support I needed…both in terms of money and validation to get started,” he continued. “But while the business plan that won the Challenge was sound, it certainly could not be used to describe my company, Mediaport, today. Everyone who competes learns valuable lessons about what it takes to move a business from concept to reality.”
Butler will serve as one of the judges for the 2008 Utah Entrepreneur Challenge.
Opportunity Quest is open to all Westminster students, regardless of major. The college is seeking additional sponsors interested in contributing to the business plan competition. For more information, visit www.westminstercollege.edu/opportunityquest .
Westminster is a nationally recognized, comprehensive liberal arts college distinguished by its unique approach to learning. With a broad array of graduate and undergraduate programs, Westminster prepares students for success with its emphasis on active learning, real world experiences and its vibrant campus community. These are further enriched by the opportunities presented by Westminster’s unique location, adjacent to the Rocky Mountains and to the dynamic city of Salt Lake. For more information visit www.westminstercollege.edu .