Eligibility Criteria

Open to:

  • all students—undergraduate or graduate—currently enrolled in two- or four-year degree granting programs at accredited not-for-profit colleges or universities located in the United States,
  • recent college graduates, as of December 31, 2022, in the United States.
  • All ventures must have at least two and no more than six team members.
  • The Team Leader serves as the main contact for the team and must complete the team's application.  The application must demonstrate that the Team Leader played a significant role in conceiving the venture.
  • Team members must:
    • demonstrate commitment to moving venture forward,
    • have played a primary role in developing the business strategy,
    • and have a key management role in the startup venture.
    • Each team must provide contact information for a faculty advisor/mentor who is familiar with the team and the venture.  Any faculty advisor/mentor is welcome but not required to be present at UTSA on pitch day.
  • The competition is for new, for-profit, independent ventures in the seed, start-up, or early growth stages.  Ventures with a social impact focus are eligible as long as there is a revenue-generating component to the venture.  Ventures that qualify for 501(c) status are not eligible.
  • An existing business is eligible only if, as of 11:59 p.m. on December 31, 2022, it has
    • received less than $25,000 in funding
    • earned less than $100,000 in gross revenue.
  • Ventures must be wholly owned by the team (i.e., investor-funded ventures will be disqualified)
  • Ventures must be student-created and student-managed. Teams are required to provide proof of enrollment or current class schedule for all members at the time of submitting the application. Recent graduates can provide a copy of their diploma, original transcript, or any other document proving their eligibility as of December 31, 2022.