April 24, 2014

Local college students advance in NYS Business Plan Competition

By: Utica Observer-Dispatch

Source: Utica Observer-Dispatch

Seven teams of students from the Mohawk Valley will compete in the final round of the New York State Business Plan Competition Friday in Albany.

The seven were among 30 teams from nine area colleges competing in an April 4 regional qualifying event on the SUNYIT campus.

Student teams pitched their best business ideas to a panel of judges in the hopes of making their dreams a reality.

Organized by the SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering, the University at Albany’s School of Business, and Syracuse University, and sponsored by the State University of New York and State Employees Federal Credit Union, the annual statewide business plan competition encourages student-led start-ups from accredited colleges throughout the state to submit business plans for a variety of business and industry innovations. Student team efforts are judged by national venture capitalists, angel investors, investment bankers and entrepreneurs; $500,000 in prizes is awarded to winning teams.

Kate Alcott, program coordinator of continuing and professional education at SUNYIT and the organizer of the regional event, said she is seeing more young people choosing to be self-employed by starting their own businesses. It’s a trend she said can be attributed to the many well-known successful entrepreneurs this generation has seen.

“It’s because of people like Mark Zuckerberg and Steve Jobs,” Alcott said in a news release. “The millennials have been raised with entrepreneurial role models. They’ve seen very young entrepreneurs start their businesses in college. This event’s message to the students is that we love their entrepreneurship, creativity and drive, and we want them to start their businesses in the Mohawk Valley.”