Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is an Idea Pitch?

A: It's a presentationwhere you can share your best ideas.  Maybe you're asking for money; if you need a little more money to launch your venture.  Maybe you need to meet somebody to find out how to develop a prototype.  Or, maybe you have a prototype but you need to find people who are good at manufacturing.  The idea is that the person you share your idea with will help you get where you want.

Q: Do you have to be a GRCC student to participate?

A: Yes - we want to make sure that whether you're a musician, or in the trades as an electrician, or a plumber, or you're in the Nursing Department, the Business Department, the Culinary Arts Department - across the board everyone is welcome to participate with their best ideas.

Q: Does it have to be a new idea?

A: Yes - it has to be a new idea.  Now, we make exceptions - if you have a hobby idea that you're working out of your home; lets say you make the greatest cookies in the world and yet hardly anyone knows about it except your neighbors - that qualifies as a new idea.  What we don't want is something that has already been commercialized or launched to market.

Q:Can students present with other students?

A: Yes - students can present alone or with other students.  up to five we would recommend. Not all five have to present, but they can be there for support - especially during the Q and A session after the 90 second pitch which is followed by three minutes of questions and answers from the judges.

Q: How many ideas will qualify to present in the first round?

A: We're going to look at the top 15 ideas.

Q: Do students need to use visuals such as PowerPoint?

A: The only visual you need to bring is yourself.  PowerPoint, products and props are not allowed.  It's 90 seconds - do your best with you.

Q: What are the prize money amounts?

A: 1st Place - $800, 2nd Place - $300, 3rd Place - $100.  For those two finalists who win - they return on November 7 to compete in the Regional Competition at Aquinas College, and the prize money gets even better: 1st Place - $1,500, 2nd Place - $1,000, and two 3rd Place winners - $500. 

Q: Besides the prize money, what are other reasons students might want to participate?

A: Other contestants have said that they walked away with great experience, contacts in the community, people who were able to answer their questions and introductions to some of the resources in our community that can make their ideas a reality.

Q: Why is sharing ideas so important?

A: Sharing ideas is critical to the success of the world and especially in Michigan which is going through an economic reimagination.  The economic engine is the entrepreneur or self-employed person; and it all starts with an idea.  Every business concept starts with an idea.