The Next Great Startup is OSU’s campus-wide, multi-round startup competition where student-led teams have the opportunity to gain feedback from leaders in the business community, experience an entire cycle of new venture creation, and win prizes. The competition takes place starting in January ends in late February.


In order to compete in the Next Great Startup, teams must:

1. Submit an application before the deadline of January 18 by end of day.

  • We need only one application for each concept. Your team members do not need to apply separately.
  • Individuals should only submit an application for one concept, not apply with multiple ideas. We will only review one application from an individual.

2. Propose an idea for their concept that is not in violation of OSU Policy or Federal Law

3. Be led by an OSU student who is currently enrolled in a degree-granting program and in good academic standing.

  • Note: the teams may have other members who are OSU faculty or staff, students from other universities, or who are not affiliated with any university. However, only current OSU students may enter the competition and lead the team.


Eligible teams who submit a complete application will be invited to come to The Auditions for the next round.



Teams that will not be considered for the competition are:

  • Ventures who have attained revenue or have raised capital from sources other than members of the team prior to the current academic year
  • Expansions of already existing companies 
  • Real estate syndications 
  • Tax shelters 
  • Franchises 
  • Licensing agreements for distribution in a different geographical area 
  • Buy-outs/turnarounds 
  • Spin-outs from existing companies
  • Concepts that violate OSU Policy or Federal Law


Teams can submit proposed ventures for a consumer or industrial product or service, for-profit or non-profit. There are no industry restrictions or preferences beyond the exclusion for concepts that would violate OSU Policy or Federal law. The most competitive businesses will be able to demonstrate high growth and/or a large market potential.


If your team makes it into the competition, you will be provided with a competitor's packet detailing the expectation and deadlines for each stage of the competition. For deliverables to be considered at any stage of the competition, they must be submitted by the deadline. Late submission of a deliverable will not disqualify any team from pitching at a round but will lose a team points with the judges.