The GW New Venture Competition (formerly the GW Business Plan Competition) provides GW students, faculty, staff and alumni with a real-world educational experience in developing, testing, and launching their own startup ventures.

The Competition is the ninth largest collegiate business plan competition in the country. Each year cash prizes are awarded, with participation from hundreds of students across the ten schools at GW. In-kind prizes worth tens of thousands of dollars are also awarded annually. These include free legal counsel, office space, and professional consultation services.

The Competition fosters innovation and entrepreneurship at GW through workshops, mentoring, non-dilutive cash grants, in-kind prizes, networking opportunities, publicity, and concept validation.

Throughout the academic year, the program provides useful resources to the participants. Dozens of workshops on ideation, customer development, social entrepreneurship, venture creation, fundraising, pitching and other important skills and topics are held. All semi-finalists teams are paired with a mentor, and extensive judges’ feedback is provided to all entrants. This effort would not be possible without the participation of over 100 volunteer mentors and judges.

The initial funding for the competition was provided by a generous grant from Richard and Annette Scott. Richard Scott is the 45th governor of Florida, as well as a successful entrepreneur. Additional funding comes from the deans of the GW schools, corporate sponsors and individual donors.

The GW New Venture Competition is administered by the GW Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship.


Founding Sponsors

Rick Scott

Rick Scott is the 45th Governor of the State of Florida and has worked to cut taxes, pay down state debt and invest in education to grow opportunities for Florida families.

Annette Scott

As an avid reader, First Lady Annette Scott spends time visiting schools and libraries across Florida, encouraging children to read and write.