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Zahn Challenge Returns

Applications for the annual Zahn Challenge are due on Feb. 13.
By SDSU News Team

Socially conscious and commercially focused entrepreneurs rejoice — the Zahn Challenge is returning to San Diego State University.

Now in its third year, the challenge — hosted by the Zahn Innovation Center — seeks the ideas for new businesses from students, faculty and staff across the university.

This year the Zahn Innovation Center will award $25,000 in cash prizes to help the challenge winners take their ideas to the next level.

There are three tracks for challenge participants:

  • The Commercial Track is for applicants with an idea for a commercial enterprise.
  • The Social Track is for applicants with an idea for a social enterprise.
  • The Z.I.C. Team Track is open to all current Zahn Innovation Center teams. (You must be currently accepted into the Zahn Innovation Center to apply for this track.)

Awards and automatic admission

The winning teams will receive monetary awards and gain automatic admission to the Zahn Innovation Center to build their companies.

Each track will award a first place prize of $5,000, a second place prize of $2,000 and a third place prize of $1,000. There will also be an audience favorite vote worth $1,000.

The first, second and third place winners from each category will automatically gain admission into the Zahn Innovation Center. All applicants who do not place will be evaluated for admission.

Dates and deadlines

To participate in the Zahn Challenge, submit an online application by noon on Feb. 13.

An overview of the judging and vetting process is available online.

Judging for the 2015 Zahn Challenge will be held on March 3 from 12 to 4 p.m., and the awards ceremony will take place on March 6 from 3 to 4:30 p.m.

At least one member of each competing team must be an active SDSU student, faculty or staff member.