Aspiring Entrepreneurs Compete for $200K in the Entrepreneurs Challenge
— September 19, 2012
The richest areas of innovation are in the seemingly unbroken aspects, because no one’s looking there.
More than 450 aspiring entrepreneurs from NYU’s student, alumni and faculty communities gathered in Paulson Auditorium to hear about this year’s Entrepreneurs Challenge. During the official Kick-Off, attendees received information about NYU Stern’s 14th Annual New Venture Competition and 10th Annual Social Venture Competition – both sponsored by Stern’s Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation – and NYU’s 3rd Annual Technology Venture Competition, hosted by Stern’s Berkley Center and NYU’s Innovation Venture Fund.
The NYU Stern Entrepreneurs Challenge is the premier platform for identifying, nurturing and showcasing entrepreneurial talent at NYU. Lasting eight months, it provides aspiring entrepreneurs with frameworks, mentoring and financial support to stimulate new venture creation. Cash prizes totaling $200K will be awarded to the winners of this year’s competitions.
Dean Peter Henry opened by encouraging the audience to ask themselves “What is your story? How are you going to use all of the assets you have to come up with something really extraordinary?”
In a panel of past winners, Shabnam Rezaei (MBA ’01), a competition mentor and judge, founder of Big Bad Boo Studios and a 2005 Entrepreneurs Challenge winner, encouraged the audience to enter the competition even if their promising venture idea is not yet fully baked: “No idea is ever not good enough; there are lot of people here who will help shape your idea.” She also reminded them that “the venture is as good as what you put into it.”
Luke Williams, Executive Director of the Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation and Clinical Associate Professor of Marketing and Entrepreneurship, urged the audience to reach for disruptive and radical ideas rather than incremental ones: “Look at the assumptions everyone is making and invert them,” he advised. “The richest areas of innovation are in the seemingly unbroken aspects, because no one’s looking there.”
About the NYU Innovation Venture Fund The NYU Innovation Venture Fund was created to accelerate the transformation of technology ideas and discoveries from the University’s students, faculty and researchers into viable ventures.