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Iona Innovation Challenge

The Hynes Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation hosts the annual Iona Innovation Challenge (IIC). This student competition gives Iona students the opportunity to design solutions that address real-world problems.

Over the course of the semester, students are not only be able to work on their ideas by completing a series of milestones (video pitch, executive summary, pitch slide deck), but also gain valuable feedback by working with our growing mentor (facilitated by our Entrepreneur-in-Residence) from a variety of fields. Students will have an opportunity to promote their ideas, build meaningful networks and garner interest to secure the resources necessary to implement their ideas. Students from all disciplines have a platform to collaboratively explore creative ways to solve small and big challenges of today. The two-month competition concludes with a final event where students compete for $6,000 in prizes.

Why Participate?

  • Take action: IIC gives you an opportunity to work on and develop an idea and take actions towards implementing it.
  • Learn new skills: IIC provides you with a robust support network to help develop your ideas and provide feedback through online and face-to-face activities, such as workshops, networking events, coworking and more.
  • Collaborate: IIC is an inclusive competition that gives you an opportunity to connect and collaborate with Iona students from a variety of majors and disciplines.
  • Mentorship: IIC gives you access to a network of mentors comprised of Iona alumni, entrepreneurs and professionals from a variety of fields.
  • Present to Judges: Finalists will be able to present their ideas to a panel of judges.
  • Win BIG! IIC awards a total of $6,000 in prize money to the winning ideas.
  • Have Fun! Take your ideas to the next level. Enjoy the process, meet new people, learn new skills, win big, and have fun moving the world!

How to Participate?

Iona students enter the competition by submitting one idea. Here are some examples of themes that your idea can fit into: social entrepreneurship, media ventures, social networking, web/app technology, business technology, service innovations, e-commerce ventures, traditional business ventures, etc.

  • Attend our annual ICC Kickoff Event in the spring.
  • Visit www.iona.startuptree.co and click ‘Get Started’ to sign up with your Iona email
  • Create a profile and be sure to fill out as much as you can!
  • Create a project page! You can update it at any time.
  • Submit your three milestones by the deadlines listed on StartupTree:
    • 1-minute Video Pitch by
    • Executive Summary
    • Pitch Slide Deck
  • Finalists will be notified.
  • Finalists will present to judges at the Final Pitch Event

Who is Eligible to Participate?

  • All Iona undergraduate and graduate students! A valid @iona.edu email address is required to enter the competition.
  • Students can enter as an individual or as a team with other students.
  • Students can only submit one idea to IIC.

Interested in participating? Email us at hynesinstitute@iona.edu.

Contact Us

Hynes Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation


715 North Avenue
Spellman Hall (4-217)
New Rochelle, NY 10801

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