Entrepreneurship Students Attend Rice Business Plan Competition, Visit Startups in Texas
AUSTIN, Texas – Nine Kent State entrepreneurship students traveled to Texas recently for a transformative experience. Students networked with leaders of successful start-up companies in Austin and experienced the Rice Business Plan Competition, the nation’s most prestigious student pitch competition, in Houston.
The 7-day trip began in Austin, where students visited start-up companies, two entrepreneurship centers and the largest tech incubator. Stops included The Capital Factory, KnowRx, Accelerate 3D and Interplay Learning. While there, senior entrepreneurship major Lauren Hollis secured a summer internship with Interplay Learning.
Following their stay in Austin, students traveled to Houston, where they attended The Rice Business Plan Competition at Rice University. Students attended the Elevator Pitch Round as a group, where each of the 42 participating startups presented their 60-second pitch.
Over the next few days, students watched startups participate in rounds of competition in industries including energy, cleantech and sustainability, hard tech, life sciences, healthcare solutions, digital enterprise and consumer products and services. While there, students had the opportunity to witness live pitches and gain a better understanding of the process judges use to select the winners. Several attendees plan to apply for the 2023 Rice Business Plan Competition later this year.
“I didn’t know any of the other students prior to going on the trip,” Hollis said. “It ended up being the best and most rewarding experience I could have asked for. Student participants were up until 2 a.m. most nights helping each other with our pitches. Everyone was so helpful and it now we all support one another in our entrepreneurial journeys.”