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The Innovation Challenge

The Innovation Challenge at Manhattan College is hosted every year in March by the O’Malley School of Business.

Innovation Challenge collage of students and faculty.

Thinking about being an entrepreneur. Thinking about building your idea into a business. Want the experience of being on a startup team.  This is for you!

Pitch Presentation to Dean Don Gibson & Winston Peters: February 7, 2024

Application Deadline: February 13, 2024 11:59 PM

Semifinals: February 28 & 29, 2024

Final Competition: March 26, 2024

The Innovation Challenge encourages students to creatively generate an idea for an exciting and practical product or service. The competition is open to Manhattan College students of all academic disciplines, who are encouraged to team up with each other if doing so enhances their innovation. (For example, engineers may team up with business students to help with the business plan for their inventions.) 


Complete this form to show your interest in the 2024 Innovation Challenge. This form is required and opens on September 21, 2023.


Entry Form: February 13, 2024

Fill out the Innovation Challenge entry to sign up for the 2024 Innovation Challenge.

This form must be filled out by every group entering the 2024 Innovation Challenge. Only one member from each team should fill out this form, which must be completed and submitted by February 13, 2024, to be eligible for entry in this year’s competition.


2024 Innovation Challenge

Watch a recap video of the 2024 Innovation Challenge. 

  • Awards
    • To help fund your startup, the total cash to be awarded in the 2023 Challenge is $10,000.00. Coordinators and judges will determine the amount to be divided among the winning teams.
  • Team Requirements
    • Teams will consist of 1-4 undergraduate students from Manhattan College
    • The competition is open to all Manhattan College students. Students are encouraged to team up with students studying other majors.
    • Entries may be submitted by teams of no more than four students.  Submissions by individuals are also welcomed.
  • Submission Guidelines
    • The Innovation Challenge entries must be submitted through the google form link in the Registration section. 
    • Make sure that your entry represents an innovative yet practical idea.  The winning ideas will have judges react by “Why didn’t I think of that?”  
    • Make sure that your narrative is well organized, well written, and addresses all the key points above
    • If possible, back up your claims with research.
  • Competition Rules
    • A percentage of the entries submitted will be selected to prepare a presentation on and model/example of their innovation.
    • The competitors should be able to answer questions from Expert
      Entrepreneurship Judges.  
    • The presentations may be modeled after the TV show Shark Tank, and must include a business plan and budget for the innovation.
    • All presentations must be submitted in powerpoint.
  • Judging

    The innovation challenge brings on talented, accomplished business professionals as judges every year. The judges for the 2024 Innovation challenge included:

    Mike Kelly
    Managing Partner of Yellow Thread Ventures, which funds early-stage and other growth-oriented companies. He is also a member of the screening committee of the Delaware Crossing Investor Group. He graduated with a BS in Business from MC in 1980. He founded On Call International in 1995, a leading provider of medical, security and travel assistance. On Call was named to the INC 5,000 Fastest Growing Private Companies List each year from 2012-2016 with a compounded annual growth rate of 48%. In 2016 Mike sold the company to the Tokio Marine Insurance Company, the 7th largest property casualty insurance company.

    Michael Partis

    Michael Partis is the Executive Director of the Bronx Cooperative Development Initiative: a nonprofit focused on increasing shared wealth and community-based planning with working class Bronx residents. Currently, he serves on the Board of Directors for Youth Power Coalition, the New Economy Project, and the Association for Neighborhood & Housing Development. He is also co-founder of The Bronx Brotherhood Project, a community-based college success program for Black and Latino teens at the New Settlement College Access Center.

    Julia Sutton

    Julia served as President and Co-founder of Exhale a wellbeing brand which was recently purchased by Hyatt. She now serves as The Chief Growth Officer for Vitruvia. Julia completed the OPM program at Harvard Business School and is a member of the COO network, American College of Sports Medicine and HBS Club of New York. She currently sits on the Manhattan College O’Malley School of Business Advisory Board. She enjoys hiking, running and biking and surfing.