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Fall 2022 - Spring 2023 Events

Chinyeh Social Innovation Challenge

RSVP to watch the Chinyeh Hostler Social Venture Challenge finalists compete to win $10,000!

Date: April 26, 2023
Time: 4:30pm - 6:30pm
Location: SDSU Student Union Theater

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Innovation Workshop


Who should attend: Faculty and Researchers


  • March 17th from 9am-2pm (RSVP by March 10th, breakfast and lunch provided)

Where: EIS 103


  • Learn how to apply innovations and creative works from your research to address important market and societal needs while improving your grant-writing skills
  • This workshop satisfies the commercialization education requirement for eligibility to apply for a $45,000 award from the Pilot Innovation Fund (PIF)

CourseKey Speaker Event

ZIP Launchpad Alumni, Ryan Vanshur and Marc Barron will be joining us to share their entrepreneurial journey of launching and growing CourseKey. Join us to hear their stories and ask questions!
Free lunch will be provided!

Date: February 24
Time: 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Location: EIS-103


Applied Innovation Challenge

  • January 26th from 4pm-6:40pm
  • February 2nd from 4pm-5:30pm
  • February 9th from 4pm-6:40pm
Where: EIS 103

The Applied Innovation Challenge is a 3-day commitment (Jan 26, Feb 2, Feb 9) where undergrad & grad students/researchers will learn how to advance early-stage technology to the marketplace, develop skills for applying research-based discoveries and innovations to solve important problems, and work with a team to find the best applications for a patented technology from an SDSU lab as a case study!

Use research discoveries to identify & address commercial issues while competing to WIN $3.75k in cash prizes. You do not need to recruit team members, as we will help place any "solo" entrants into teams when you all arrive.

Startup Week 2022

Don’t miss out on this year’s in-person San Diego Startup Week! Happening October 25-28, this 4-day conference will feature pitch competitions, #startup incubators, networking, startup fairs, and more.

Get to know the SD startup ecosystem and meet some local founders and entrepreneurs. 


Date: October 27 (At SDSU)
Time: 2:00pm - 8:00pm
Location: Student Union

Alumni Reception

Join SDSU Alumni, the Fowler College of Business, and ZIP Launchpad for a lunch reception during San Diego Startup Week. Lunch reception includes food, drinks and networking opportunities with SDSU alumni. Free to the first 100 to register.

Startup Week is Startup San Diego’s premier annual conference celebrating and convening the San Diego startup community to connect, educate, and inspire the ecosystem! During the week, attendees meet hundreds of entrepreneurs, startup founders, investors, developers, designers, community leaders, students, innovators…and local leaders doing good for the startup ecosystem. 

Date: October 27
Time: 1:00pm - 2:00pm
Location: Oggis Patio at the SDSU Student Union

Cody Barbo Speaker Series

SDSU Alum and two time founder, Cody Barbo will be joining us to share his entrepreneurial journey of launching and growing Trust & Will. To date, Cody and his team have raised $23M to modernize the estate planning industry. Join us to hear his story and ask questions! 

Date: October 21
Time: 12:00pm - 1:00pm
Location: Virtual (Zoom)

Big Data Hackathon Fall 2022

Compete for over $13k in prizes by tackling real-world challenges in healthcare! The 2022 Big Data Hackathon for San Diego aims to promote Data Science and Big Data Analytics for both students and educators in Southern California. Food will be provided.

Date: October 8 & 15
Location: Storm Hall West 12

Breanne Speaker Series Event

Breanne is the Founder and CEO of Sēkr, a technology platform simplifying the outdoor travel planning experience. As a queer woman of color, Breanne has built 6, 7 and 8 figure businesses, raised venture capital and actively mentors other minority founders. Join us to hear her story! 

Date: September 23
Time: 12:00pm - 1:00pm
: Virtual (Zoom)


Pitch your best ideas for the chance to win prizes! Every fall, the ZIP Launchpad, in partnership with SDSU Entrepreneur Society and SDSU Women in Business, invites students of all majors to create and pitch solutions for real-world problems! Food will be provided.

Date/Time: August 31 @ 7pm

Location: EIS-103

Application Workshops Fall 2022

Teams that follow the process as outlined in the application innovation workshop are 60% more likely to be accepted. If the dates provided conflict with school or work, please email [email protected]

Application Workshop Dates August 23,24,31, and September 1

Idea to Startup

Join the SDSU ZIP Launchpad for Idea to Startup! Students will have the opportunity to learn about the many ways to get involved at ZIP Launchpad and tour the ZIP Launchpad as well as the H.G. Fenton Company Idea Lab. Food and snacks will be provided.

This event is part of the San Diego State University Welcome Week

Date: August 18, 19, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26 from 11 AM - 2 PM

Location: EIS-103


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Brian Mariotti Speaker Event

Join us to hear from the CEO of Funko, Brian Mariotti!

Date: April 8 - 11am-12pm

Location: EIS-103 and Virtual

Chris Bennett Speaker Event

Join us to hear from the CEO and Founder of Wonderschool, Chris Bennett!

Date: March 11 - 11am-12pm

Location: Virtual (Zoom)

Jaime Schmidt Speaker Event

Join us to hear from Jaime Schmidt about her story of launching Schmidt's Naturals, a company manufacturing and selling plant and mineral-based personal care products!

Date: February 11th at 11am-12pm

Location: Virtual (Zoom)

ZIP Faculty Cohort

  • ZIP Launchpad Faculty and Researcher Innovation Workshop:
  • Workshop Dates:
    • February 25: 8:30am - 10:30am
    • March 4: 8:30am - 10:30am
    • March 11: 8:30am - 10:30am
    • March 18: 8:30am - 10:30am
  • Location: EIS 103

Speaker Series - November 5

Join us to hear from a true changemaker! Andy will share his story of launching and building GoFundMe, a social good platform that has raised over $5 billion for charitable causes.

Date: November 5 - 11am-12pm

Location: Virtual (Zoom)

Paint Your Perspective

Come listen to dynamic and engaging Women In STEM talk about their paths to success while painting pottery of your choice. This event is targeted at Women in STEM, but is open and beneficial to all SDSU students. Learn more

Speaker Series - October 15

Revolutionizing an ancient industry doesn't intimidate Sashee! Join us to hear her story of launching Tea Drops, an environmentally friendly, high quality line of teas. 

Date: October 15th at 11am-12pm

Location: Virtual (Zoom)

Paid Internship Fair

The Paid Internship Fair, held each semester in the Fall and Spring, helps Launchpad teams meet with student intern prospects. The event is fast-paced, speed dating style to kick start the initial meeting of ZIP Launchpad teams and students intern prospects Team have a few weeks to select interns who attended the event.

Learn More

Speaker Series - September 24

Caitlin is building a future where everyone has a place to call home! Join us to hear how this marketing grad created a real estate tech company to make an impact.
Date: Sept. 24th at 11am-12pm
Location: Virtual (Zoom)

Go Green Pitchfest

Friday, September 17th 12pm - 1:30pm: Hear student teams pitch their solutions to environmental issues and vote for your favorite team!

Learn more about the Go Green Pitchfest


Learn about a problem, pitch a solution and potentially win prizes! Sign up today.

Location: EIS-103 (ZIP Launchpad)

Time: 7:00pm - 8:30pm

Welcome Week - Entrepreneurship Reception

Learn about the different entrepreneurship opportunities offered at San Diego State University!

Stop by EIS - 103 on September 1 @ 12pm to attend!

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Leadership Workshops


Leadership workshops with Lucas Dailey.

  • Tuesdays: 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM
  • Fridays: 1:30 PM - 2:30 PM

Paint Your Perspective

Free painting kit will be sent to ALL participants

Speaker Event - Empower Her Challenge Finals

Alyse Nelson, CEO & Co-Founder of Vital Voices, will join us on Friday, April 23rd to share her story of launching an organization that invests in fearless women leaders across the world. Alyse founded Vital Voices alongside her fellow co-founders, Hillary Clinton, Melanne Verveer and Madeleine Albright. Alyse's talk will kick off the final pitches for the Empower Her Challenge, during which students will share their innovative business ideas to empower women and winners will be selected to receive $2000 in cash prizes. RSVP Today!

Empower Her Challenge

Join us for the Empower Her Challenge, a problem solving competition designed to inspire business ideas that empower women. The 2 day challenge kicks off on April 16th during which teams learn about 3 specific challenges disproportionately affecting women. After selecting a challenge and developing a solution, teams will pitch their ideas on April 23rd and compete for $2000 in cash prizes! ALL undergraduate and graduate students at SDSU are encouraged to register. You may register as a team of 2-3 or as an individual and be placed on a team and you must attend both days to compete.

Speaker Series March 26

Date/Time: March 26, 12PM - 1PM

Location: Zoom

Food waste warrior, entrepreneur, investor and endurance athlete, Matt Clifford is on a mission to make a positive impact in our world. Matt is the co-founder and former COO of Barnana, a line of healthful snacks made from upcycled bananas. He’s now transitioned to CEO of Keto Krisp. Join us to hear Matt’s interesting story. RSVP! 

Paid Internship Fair

Speaker Series

Date/Time: February 26, 12PM - 1PM

Location: Zoom

Nate Spees is the founder and CEO of Made by Grizzly, a creative agency developing design solutions for world changing brands. Join us to hear Nate’s story of going from the corporate world, to starting his own successful agency, to running one of the largest networking groups in San Diego and more. RSVP Today! 

Visionary Health Challenge

The Visionary Health Challenge focused on BIG health problems facing our community. We provided domain experts to advise participants on identifying a problem and guiding them on finding an innovative solution to the BIG problem. Each team (3-4 people) pitched their idea at the end of the day to a panel of judges.

Up to $2500 in cash prizes for the winning team and an offer to participate in the ZIP Launchpad SPRING cohort!

Winning teams:
1st Place: Symtalk
2nd Place: Aphasia Unity
3rd Place: AsOne

Application Workshops

Design Thinking for Social Enterprises
In this hands-on workshop, you will learn an effective approach to solving the world's problems and making a positive impact. We will focus on Design Thinking as a process to solve problems using creative solutions. As we will see, design thinking can be applied to catalyzing large-scale social change.

Speaker Event - October

With a commitment to sustainability, Derrick launched his first company at 16 and planted 150,000 trees. Since then he and his co-founders launched tentree, an apparel brand dedicated to planting 10 trees per item sold. tentree is responsible for planting over 35 million trees to date. Derrick was named a Top 30 under 30 social entrepreneur by Forbes this year. Join us to hear Derrick's story and ask questions. 

Speaker Event - November

  • Date: Friday, November 20
  • Time: 12:00PM - 1:00PM
  • Scot Chisholm, CEO/Co-Founder of Classy, a San Diego based social enterprise platform which creates fundraising tools for non-profits. Since inception, Classy has facilitated over $1 billion raised for social good. Join us to hear Scot's story of launching Classy with his friends and then turning it into a Top 100 Impact Company in the world.
  • Video

Ideation Event

Presented by the SDSU Entrepreneur Society & SDSU Women in Business

Date: Monday, December 7
Time: 5:15 PM - 6:00 PM
Learn More About our Ideation Event


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