The UM-Dearborn Business Idea Pitch Competition helps students build skills in marketing, critical thinking, and communication.

Students develop these skills by learning about some of the region's most pressing concerns. By pitching their creative ideas for solving these issues, students have a chance to win thousands of dollars in cash prizes.

A pitch competition finds a way to bridge the gap between the theory that you learn in class and the practical application in the real world.

Business Idea Pitch Details

All of us have been impacted in some way by challenges associated with the pandemic. If you are being affected by these changes, then others must be too, right? Students are encouraged to share their ideas related to changes in lives due to pandemic challenges for a chance to win thousands of dollars in cash prizes and explore the potential of their ideas.

In a two-step process, individuals or teams of up to five members start by submitting ideas online. 

Ideas are reviewed by experts. The general public also has the chance to vote for ideas. The top ten teams selected present their ideas for additional cash prizes on Pitch Day.

During the pitch competition, teams have five minutes to describe their business idea more fully as they present to a panel of judges.

Prizes are split among several worthy projects according to the panel of judges.

Final pitch presentations describe the product or service, the target customer or user, the market potential of the idea, identify competitors, and demonstrate how the idea is different from the competition.


Open to all current UM-Dearborn students of any major or background.


We want students to come up with great ideas! Students may enter their ideas for a chance to win thousands of dollars in cash prizes. We encourage students to submit their ideas related to changes in lives due to challenges associated with the pandemic, however students can submit ideas that are not related to this topic.


TBD. Check back later for the next pitch competition date!




Enter for the chance to win cash prizes, network with successful entrepreneurs from the metro-Detroit area, and gain real world experience in problem solving and pitching.


Teams must first submit their ideas online. Ideas with the most votes and those chosen by judges will move forward to present on Pitch Day.

Expectations (“the fine print”)
  • Must be a current student or team of current students at UM-Dearborn to participate.
  • To register and be eligible to participate, you must submit your pitch application by TBD.
  • Presentations on Pitch Day can be no longer than 5 minutes.
  • Presentations on Pitch Day can include a slide presentation (e.g., PowerPoint).
  • Presentations on Pitch Day must be live. Recorded presentations/videos will not be permitted.
  • Participants (at least one team member from a team) must attend the pitch competition to collect any prizes.

Visit the FAQ page or contact Kari Kowalski at

iLabs Center for Innovation Research

Fairlane Center South (FCS)
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