Pilots Venture Competition

Learn More About This Year's Pilot Venture Winners


Invention Category: Saturday, April 18, 2020 at 8 a.m. - Noon
For Profit/Social Enterprise Category: Saturday, April 25, 2020 at 8 a.m. - Noon

NOTE: The Pilot Venture Challenge is still on! In light of the current COVID-19 situation, we will be using MS Teams to conduct the competition online and in real-time. Please be sure to pre-register (below) and check back often as we roll out more information and instructions.

Sign Up For informational Meeting
There will be a live, online informational meeting, Tuesday, March 31st, 4:00-5:00pm and Thursday, April 2nd, 6:00-7:00pm, using MS Teams. Learn about how to participate and what to prepare for participating in the Pilot Venture Challenge. Please join the Team and we will send you out an invitation on the morning of March31st to join the meetings!

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. Students are provided with expert feedback on their plans and presentations.

The Pilots Venture Challenge is a multi-day competition where student teams will present their plans for new ventures (for profit, social enterprise, and invention) to a panel of judges. There are two competition categories: Invention and For-Profit/Social.  Students competing in the Invention category can also compete in the For-Profit/Social category, but must submit a business plan that meets the format for the For-Profit/Social category.

Challenge Guidelines and Overview


Last Day to Register for Invention Category: April 8th by midnight
Last Day to Register for For-Profit/Social Category: April 15th by midnight


  • Innovation Category
    • 1st Place: $1500.00
    • 2nd Place: $750.00
  • For-Profit/Social Category
    • For-Profit 1st Place: $1500.00
    • Social 1st Place: $1500.00
    • For-Profit 2nd Place: $750.00
    • Social 2nd Place: $750.00
    • For-Profit 3rd Place: $500.00
  • Special Awards
    • People’s Choice: $500.00
    • AARP Foundation Prize: $3,000.00

      2019 Challenge winners.