Pilot Venture Challenge 2021 – Virtual

Informational Meeting – Tuesday, March 9th, 4:00 p.m.
There will be a live, online informational meeting, Tuesday, March 9th, 4:00-5:00pm, to learn about how to participate and what to prepare for to participate in the Pilot Venture Challenge. Please email us at franzcenter@up.edu to let us know you want to attend and to receive the Zoom invite.

  • Invention Category: Saturday, April 17, 2021, 8 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
  • For Profit/Social Category: Saturday, April 24, 2021, 8 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

The Pilots Venture Challenge is a premier business, social enterprise and invention competition hosted by the Franz Center for Leadership, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation at the University of Portland. Underwritten by generous donors to the University, the competition promotes experiential education about entrepreneurship and new business development by focusing on student created, launched, and managed ventures. The spirit of this competition is that current UP undergraduate or graduate students both originate and lead the startup idea.

Students compete in two competition categories: Invention and For-Profit/Social – Please see the Pilot Venture Guidelines for all more detailed information.

Students competing in the Invention category will be considered to go on to represent the University of Portland at the InventOR – a state-wide collegiate prototyping competition. Students competing in all categories and interested in continuing to advance their venture ideas and/or compete in other regional and national competitions can receive continued assistance through the Franz Center.


  • Innovation Category
    • 1stPlace: $1500.00
    • 2ndPlace: $750.00
  • For-Profit/Social Category
    • For-Profit 1stPlace: $1500.00 / Social 1st Place: $1500.00
    • For-Profit 2ndPlace: $750.00 / Social 2nd Place: $750.00
    • For-Profit 3rdPlace: $500.00 / Social 3rd Place: $500.00


Pre-Registration NOW OPEN and Deadlines

All individuals/teams must pre-register their interest in participating in the Pilots Venture Challenge. We encourage students to do this as soon as possible, as this allows us to better communicate information to participants, provide assistance, plan and manage the events.

Click here to register

Deadlines to pre-register are: April 5th for Invention Category - by midnight and April 12th for For-Profit/Social Category. See the Pilot Venture Guidelines for additional deadlines.


Results of Pilot Venture Challenge 2020

2019 Challenge winners.