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Proposal Deadline Nears for Third Annual ‘Business Plan Challenge’

Students from four area colleges are invited to compete in the third annual Quad College & University Business Plan Challenge, an opportunity for budding entrepreneurs to hone their business acumen before launching a company.

The competition is open to any registered student at Pennsylvania College of Technology, Lycoming College, and Mansfield and Lock Haven universities. The program jointly sponsored by the four institutions, the Ben Franklin Technology Partners and the Williamsport/Lycoming Keystone Innovation Zone represents an opportunity for students to learn how to take their ideas from concept to reality, experience real-world business-development conditions and sharpen their presentation skills.

“If you have a business idea that you think would be successful or if you want to start your own business someday, consider participating in the Quad College & University Business Plan Challenge,” Rikki Riegner, program manager for the Williamsport/Lycoming KIZ, tells interested students. “This contest will give you exposure to local business professionals, who will provide you with valuable feedback on your business idea and who may be interested in supporting your business. Not to mention, the winners of the contest will be awarded cash prizes.”

Prizes of $7,500, $5,000 and $2,500 will be presented. While any type of business plan is eligible, the $5,000 KIZ prize specifically honors the best new product idea.

Winners also will have the possibility of start-up money from the Ben Franklin partnership, assistance from the Williamsport-Lycoming KIZ and a panel of area business leaders to help advance their ventures.

In the first two years of the competition, three Penn College students (William J. Davis, Corey M. Weems and Matthew L. Gross) earned a total of $20,000 in winnings.

More information about the competition, including deadlines and presentation dates, can be found online or by calling (800) 326-9467.

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