SDSU Social Venture Challenge

2025 Social Venture Challenge Topic:

Food Insecurity: Access, Availability, Affordability, Impacting our College Students, Military, Unsheltered, and Beyond

What is the SDSU Social Venture Challenge?

  • A pitch competition held annually at SDSU
  • Open to SDSU undergraduate students and graduate students AND other Southern California colleges and universities by invitation
  • The pitch is based on identifying a significant problem related to the impact of food insecurity in our region and presenting an innovative solution resulting in a social venture
  • $15,000 Grand Prize
  • Teams will compete for over $35,000 in cash prizes

What is a social venture?

The distinguishing characteristic of the social venture versus the commercial venture is the primacy of their objective to solve social problems and provide social benefits. The social venture may generate profits, but that is not its focus. Rather, profits are a possible means to achieve sustainability in providing a social benefit. The entity can be for-profit, non-profit or a hybrid. The problems addressed by social ventures cover a range of social issues, including poverty, inequality, education, the environment, and economic development.

What Are the Requirements of Nominated Teams?

  • Must be an undergraduate or graduate student during the Fall 2024 and Spring 2025 semesters
  • You must have at least a minimum of two students (see above) and a maximum of four students
  • 2 students available to participate in a 2-hour live competition at SDSU on March 21, 2025 from 3-5 PM
  • We welcome ideas, not companies. (Startups with any revenue to date from product/services sales are not eligible to compete.)
  • All majors are welcome!

How Are Teams Nominated?

  1. The participating school’s representative will submit a Google Form with the nominated teams’ names and contact information.
     
  2. We’re here to help!
    1. Have questions? Send us an email!
    1. Contact us at [email protected]

SDSU Social Venture Challenge

Southern California Collegiate Competition, by invitation only 

College students solving BIG problems related to the impact of food insecurity in the Southern California region resulting in a social venture

March 21st, 2024  3-5 PM

SDSU Prebys Student Union Theater 

  • Work with your university to find out if you are eligible to compete!
  • Compete for over $35,000 in cash prizes with a Grand Prize of $15,000

Prize Money:

  • Prize money won by students from invited Universities/Colleges will be distributed to the winner's home campus and awarded to the individual/team by their campus's payment department. 
  • Campuses must be prepared to work with the SDSU Research Foundation for payment processing. 
     

Resources

Need help with your application? Check out the document below for resources to get you started!

Sample Application

Prize Money:

  • Prize money won by students from invited Universities/Colleges will be distributed to the winner's home campus and awarded to the individual/team by their campus's payment department. 
  • Campuses must be prepared to work with the SDSU Research Foundation for payment processing. 
     

Application Cycle

September 1, 2024 - December 11, 2024