upNEXT Student Pitch Competition



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Ringling College of Art and Design
PreCollege 2020
2700 North Tamiami Trail Sarasota, FL 34234-5895
Phone: (941) 955-8866
Fax: (941) 955-8801




PreCollege Student Startup Competition 2020

The Business of Art and Design major is inviting all high-school aged students to participate in the upNEXT Student Startup Competition. Send us a 2-minute “elevator pitch” video telling us about your business idea and the problem it solves for a chance to win a scholarship to Ringling’s 2020 PreCollege.


Competition Details        Pitch Video Requirements          Submission Requirements          Additional Information          Previous Winning Submissions


Do you have an idea for a new business?
A creative solution to a big problem?
An innovative concept for a product or service?

Qualifying ideas include:

  • A new business venture
  • An innovative new product or service concept
  • A compelling solution to a social challenge

PreCollege Scholarships Available:  

  • 1st place $3000
  • 2nd place $2000
  • 3rd place $1000

Eligibility Requirements:

  • You must be a currently enrolled high school student or a recent high school graduate.
  • International students are welcome as long as you are enrolled in a high school curriculum and your video is produced in English.
  • There are no limits to the type of business you pitch. Any idea for a new business, product, service, or social venture is welcome.
  • Winners will be enrolled in a Business of Art and Design Immersion this summer, with an open second Immersion of their choosing.


Creative leaders and entrepreneurs use video content to convey creative ideas, align teams behind a single vision, and pitch new business ventures at every level. We challenge you to do the same! You can create the video however you see fit: using original illustrations or designs, stock footage, original videos captured on your phone, photos, or by simply speaking directly to camera about your idea. You do not have to be a film student or have animation skills to enter. This contest is about your entrepreneurial idea and how you visually, verbally, and creatively convey that idea to viewers.

The judges (Business of Art and Design Faculty at Ringling College) will select winners based on:

  • The quality of the idea and proposed business model;
  • How clearly it is communicated verbally and/or visually;
  • How well you engage and capture viewers in your pitch video.

At a minimum, your video pitch must clearly and persuasively communicate your idea and the problem it solves.


Not sure where to start? 

>>>>>> Check out the thousands of video pitches posted on crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo! Plus, explore the multitude of apps available to edit together video clips with text and visual effects! Consider including the following:

What’s your story? Give a brief introduction to who you are as a future founder!

  • Introduce yourself
  • Tell us the story behind your startup project
  • Where'd you get the idea?
  • What’s your vision as an aspiring entrepreneur?
  • Why do you want to attend Ringling’s PreCollege?

What’s your idea? Creatively show and tell us how it works!

  • What’s the opportunity or problem being solved?
  • Who are the target customers, end users, or beneficiaries?
  • What is your unique and creative value proposition?
  • What differentiates your idea from competitors?
  • Include any other information you have about the proposed business model, such as proposed revenue streams, market description, or potential partnerships.
  • Include visuals to help tell the story and visualize your idea.


STEP 1: Upload your pitch video (2 minutes max. length of the video) to YouTube

STEP 2: Email the YouTube link to your video to ksobr@c.ringling.edu by March 15th, 2020 (you must include “upNEXT Competition 2020” in the subject line)

In your email include:

  • Your full name
  • Your current high school
  • Your current grade level
  • A few sentences about your background and interests in business, design, entrepreneurship (anything else you’d like to share to give us a stronger sense of who you are)
  • Why you are interested in the Business of Art and Design PreCollege Immersion.

STEP 3: Wait for the winners to be announced on Instagram (@RinglingBusiness) on March 20th, 2020


The upNEXT Student Startup Competition is open to any and all currently enrolled high-school students with an entrepreneurial idea of any kind! International students are welcome to apply as long you are enrolled in a high-school curriculum and your video is produced in English.



EMAIL ADDRESS: ksobr@c.ringling.edu

NOTE: You must include “upNext Competition 2020” in the subject line.

JUDGES: The Business of Art and Design Faculty at Ringling College.


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