Competitors-Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship - Carnegie Mellon University


The McGinnis Venture Competition is a three-round business competition, the first two rounds virtual and the final round live. Submission requirements and guidelines can be found below. Teams that advance to the final round should use all feedback from previous rounds to their competitive advantage.

Why Compete?

Grand Prizes

Teams compete for the chance to win investments worth a total of $60K.*

Prize Allocation:

Graduate Track

  • First Place: $25,000
  • Second Place: $15,000
  • Third Place: $10,000

Undergraduate Track
Undergraduate track winners also are awarded a place in the CMU Venture Challenge

  • First Place: $4,000
  • Second Place: $2,500

The remaining $3,500 will sponsor the CMU Venture Challenge.

*Investments are awarded in the form of a convertible note.

Networking Opportunities

Meet and interact with peers who are also passionate about entrepreneurship, and gain access to Carnegie Mellon’s amazing entrepreneurial alumni network. Teams from all rounds enjoy access to exclusive networking events.

Help Along the Way

CONNECTS events are held throughout the year to help teams prepare. Final round teams are coached by a dedicated mentor who has a domain expertise.


Teams interested in competing should carefully read the eligibility rules, requirements and guidelines and judging criteria (below).

Registration closed.

Deadline to apply was Monday, January 19, 2015

Stay tuned for more information regarding the 2016 competition.

Eligibility Details

Track Details

Requirements and Guidelines: Round 1

Requirements and Guidelines: Round 2

Requirements and Guidelines: Round 3

Confidentiality and Intellectual Property Guidelines

Judging Criteria

CIE Calendar

2016 Competition

Stay tuned for the schedule!

2014-2015 Important Dates & Deadlines

Mon, Nov 10: Executive Summary [pdf] and Video Pitch Constraints Released

Mon, Dec 1: Registration Opens

Mon, Jan 19: Round 1 Registration Closes at 11:59 PM EST; Round 1 Executive Summary [pdf] and Video Pitch Due

Tues, Jan 27: Teams Notified; Round 2 Begins at 5:00 PM EST

Thurs, Feb 12: Round 2 Closes at 11:59 PM EST; Round 2 Updated Executive Summary [pdf] and Video Pitch Due

Tues, Feb 24:
Teams Notified; Round 3 Begins at 5:00 PM EST

Tues, March 17:
Round 3 Mini-Business Plan [pdf] Due

Thu, March 26: Live Final Round-Held at Carnegie Mellon University, Jared L. Cohon University Center

Check out our calendar for more important dates, deadlines and events.