thinkBIG! Challenge Entry Submission


Challenge competitors develop ideas and submit innovative business concepts to compete for $9,000 in prizes and recognition as Veale Innovators.

Here you will find information about:

  • Competition rounds
  • Prizes!
  • The timeline
  • Round 1: Idea Development & Written Submission Round

    Students start by forming a challenge team that explores and develops big ideas for entrepreneurial innovations for Northeast Ohio. Teams submit written Executive Summaries (10 slides max, .pdf) that include 6 building blocks for describing the idea: the problem, the solution, customers, the competition, revenue, and next steps.

    Tools for Round 1:

    Round 2: Video Submission Round

    Semifinalist teams are competing to become a Final Four Challenge team! To submit a video for judging, semifinalists must first upload a 60-second pitch video to YouTube, then submit the URL to us for Round 2 judging using an entry form that will become available after December 15, 2017.

    Round 3: Final Four – Live Pitch Challenge at the Summit on February 27, 2018

    The Final Four Challenge teams make live pitches at the Summit and compete for the Grand Prize! Final pitch decks must be submitted using an entry form that will become available after February 19, 2018.



    For thinkBIG! Challenge Final Four teams
    Grand Prize Team – $5,000 cash (teams must split)
    Other Three Final Four Teams – $1,000 each (teams must split)
    Each Final Four team member also receives:

  • 6-month access to Fownders Online Academy ($580 value)
  • Veale Innovator Medals
    For Mini Maker Hackathon team at the Summit
    Each team member is awarded a $50 gift card


    For School Sponsoring the Grand Prize Team
    Wildfire Education Workshop for Entrepreneurial Studies – One seat ($1,100 value)
    Traveling Veale Innovation Cup Trophy

    For Schools Sponsoring Each of the Final Four Teams
    Banner recognizing the school as a Veale Innovation School

    • August, 2017: School Registration Opens
    • December 1, 2017: Written Submissions Due
    • December 4-13, 2017: Judging Window Round 1
    • December 15, 2017: Semifinalists Announced
    • January 19, 2018: Semifinalists’ 60-Second Videos Due
    • January 22 – February 4, 2018: Judging Window Round 2
    • February 9, 2018: ThinkBIG! Summit Registration Deadline
    • February 19, 2018: Final Four Announced
    • February 27, 2018: thinkBIG! Summit