The University of South Carolina’s Entrepreneurial Challenge

The Proving Ground is the University of South Carolina's entrepreneurial competition to identify and accelerate innovative business concepts. We're looking for ideas that will change the world, and change the way people live. Teams of USC undergraduate students, graduate students and recent alumni are eligible to compete for more than $80,000 in seed money, startup support, and the chance to turn their ideas into reality. Help us find the "next big thing" by being a part of The Proving Ground! The competition is a proving ground for everything from new technologies discovered in the lab to business ideas brainstormed on the back of a napkin. The Proving Ground has been the starting point for aspiring entrepreneurs as they make their way in the business world.

Culminating on November 17 during Global Entrepreneurship Week, finalists will pitch their concepts to a panel of seasoned entrepreneurs in a Shark Tank like event for the chance to win up to $20,000 in cash in each of three categories: the Fluor Social Impact Award, the Maxient Innovation Award, or the Avenir Discovery Award. And as a bonus, we have the SCRA Technology Ventures Fan Favorite category. Make sure to join us at 6:00 p.m. on November 17 in the W.W. Hootie Johnson Performance Hall for all the fun. It will be electric as the finalists in each category square off and present their ideas for what they believe will be "The Next Big Thing." And as a member of the live audience, you will get to vote for the fan favorite. Sign up to attend this event free of charge at Squadup.