Student business competitions to focus on creating shared value

Entrepreneurship professors will be available for coaching on April 18

The competitions are open to currently enrolled undergraduate and graduate students at Penn State. Credit: Chris Koleno / Penn StateCreative Commons

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Current undergraduate and graduate students can now enter the Creating Shared Value Challenge 2021, competing first in Penn State-wide competition as well as an international competition with other universities at the Bengis Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at Ben Gurion University, Israel.

Penn State winning teams in the University competition will be awarded prizes of $400 for first place, $200 for second place and $100 for third place.

Each year, the Bengis Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation picks a theme and hosts a challenge for students to think about big problems and offer solutions. With startups and corporations around the world increasingly prioritizing the social impact of their business decisions and focusing on creating shared value, this year’s theme asks student teams to consider how business can be a force for good.

Students interested in competing in the Creating Shared Value Challenge should first understand some of the major concepts behind the movement from this video by Jamey Darnell, clinical assistant professor of entrepreneurship at the Penn State Smeal College of Business. Students can also learn more by visiting the Bengis Center Impact Hub and reading the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals.

Students should then form their team and choose from one of two tracks: an impact startup or a business recommendation. Those who choose to focus on an impact startup will come up with an idea for a startup that addresses a social or environmental problem and is easily scalable. Students who work on a business recommendation will develop an idea that will help corporations improve their sustainability through social or environmental practices.

Teams are encouraged to sign up for coaching from Penn State entrepreneurship professors between 7 and 9 p.m. April 18. A time slot form can be found here, and a link to Zoom coaching can be found here.

Ideas must be submitted by May 9. Submissions will be delivered to both the international competition and the Penn State challenge for judging. Visit the challenge website to learn about requirements and judging criteria.

Learn more about entrepreneurship and innovation at Penn State from the Center for Penn State Student Entrepreneurship.

Last Updated April 07, 2021