DECEMBER 13, 2021 — Applications are now open for the inaugural UTSA Draper Data Science Business Plan Competition. The contest, open to university students from around the world, is unique among business plan competitions in its focus on data science and its applications. Winning teams earn cash prizes and all participants will learn skills that will prepare them for high-demand careers in growing fields.
“Data science can bring together many fields of inquiry with computing, mathematical and statistical methods and with big data to understand and address unmet market needs,” said David Mongeau, founding director of the UTSA School of Data Science. “The Draper Competition at UTSA is the first of its kind expressly focused on business ventures that leverage data science to create value—with the potential to change the world in which we live and work.”
Applications for the competition will be open through January 31, 2022. In February, UTSA will announce the invited teams. The in-person competition will take place April 13-15, 2022.
The competition is open to undergraduate and graduate students around the world who are leading new for-profit, independent ventures in the seed, start-up or early growth stages with a sustainable revenue model.
Teams will be competing for substantial cash prizes, with $50,000 going to the first-place team, $30,000 to the second-place team, $20,000 to the third-place team and $10,000 for a student-voted “best in show” category.
This new competition was made possible by a $1 million gift to UTSA by Timothy and Melissa Draper. Timothy Draper is a third-generation venture capitalist and the founder of Draper University. His investments in Skype, Tesla, SpaceX, Hotmail, Twitch, Robinhood and more have built his reputation as a world-renowned tech investor.
“Business plan competitions are a primary driver for brilliant ideas to be recognized and receive funding to be taken to the next level,” said Randolph Quinn, executive director of UTSA Student Innovation and Entrepreneurship. “We expect to see innovative and disruptive ideas come from student entrepreneurs from across the world who understand the potential of data science.”
The Draper Competition is hosted by the UTSA School of Data Science and the university’s Student Innovation and Entrepreneurship office. Organizers will host two online information sessions prior to the January 31 deadline.
Find more information about the competition, eligibility and how to apply at the Draper Competition website.
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