Student Startup Competition

Do you have an innovative business idea or startup? Calling all budding McMaster student and recent alumni entrepreneurs, the online applications for our biggest pitch competition are now open. Up to $100,000 will be awarded to 12 finalists of The Forge Student Startup Competition and a guaranteed spot in the Summer Student Academy. Apply now for the chance to turn your startup dream into reality.

APPLY HERE BY FOLLOWING THE STEPS BELOW (APPLICATIONS CLOSE MARCH 1):
  1. Download and fill out the following form and save the file as a PDF. The Forge Startup Competition Form collecting business idea or startup information
  2. Fill out a Typeform application here, where you will be asked to upload the form from step #1.
KEY DATES
  • Sunday, March 1, 2020: Applications close
  • March 3-6, 2020: 18 Semi-Finalists interviewed
  • Friday, March 13, 2020: 🎈12 Finalists announced, winning guaranteed spot in our summer startup academy!!! 🎈
  • Thursday, April 2, 2020 (5:30 pm-7:30 pm): Final Competition, prize money awarded $$$$
WINNERS WILL RECEIVE:
  • Grant funding: Up to $100K will be awarded to 12 finalist teams
  • A guaranteed spot in The Forge Summer Startup Academy
  • Pitch coaching to perfect their pitch before the final competition on April 2, 2020
WHAT WERE PREVIOUS COMPETITIONS LIKE?

THE FINAL PITCH COMPETITION:
  • The pitch competition takes place on Thursday, April 2, 2020 inside CIBC Hall at McMaster University.
  • The event is free and open to the public so you can invite your friends to cheer you on and vote for you for “Audience Choice Award!”
  • Food and drinks will be served.
WHAT IS THE FORGE SUMMER STARTUP ACADEMY?
  • The Summer Startup Academy is a great opportunity for students to develop their business ideas together with experienced entrepreneurs and business professionals. Winners of the competition will have a guaranteed spot in Academy, giving them a chance to focus on their business during the summer from May till August, 2020.
  • Students will dedicate at least 20 hours a week to focus on growing their startup or bringing their business idea to market.
Benefits of the Academy:
  • 1on1 Mentorship
  • Office and Meeting room spaces at McMaster Innovation Park
  • Access to Makerspace
  • Investor referral program
  • Founder Socials
  • Entrepreneurship Workshops
  • Peer2Peer Meetups
  • Startup Conference Tickets
  • Networking Events
  • Professional Service Providers
  • Discounts on Partner Programs
COMPETITION ELIGIBILITY:
  • All currently enrolled McMaster University students and recent alumni (graduating in the past year, 2019) are eligible to participate. For example: Part-time/full-time Undergraduate/Graduate/Ph.D./Continuing Education
  • If you are not a McMaster student/recent alum, but you have a Co-Founder or CEO who is a McMaster student/recent alum, please have that person fill out the application form.
  • If you are not a McMaster student/recent alum and do not have a McMaster student/recent alum on your team, unfortunately, you are not eligible to apply. Please consider our other fantastic programs offered at The Forge. You are eligible to apply to Startup School and The Business Incubator programs. These programs are open to anyone with an innovative startup/business idea, click here to read more.

Are you interested in applying? Need help with your application?
Contact us: info(at)theforge.mcmaster.ca