A student presents his group's idea in front of his peers and the Entrepreneurship Cup judges Friday.
Some creative business plans netted a group of University of Virginia students a big cash prize Friday as the second annual Entrepreneurship Cup wrapped up on grounds.
Thanks to a sponsorship from a venture capital company called Third Security, UVA handed out $40,000 in cash to four student teams with winning business proposals.
The competition is a part of Global Entrepreneurship Week and these were not hypothetical ideas. Teams presented real business proposals to a group of judges who graded them on criteria like the plans' viability and how well ideas were thought out.
Proposals came from students in departments across grounds, not just from the business school.
"Whether you're an artist or an architect, or in a school of [education], everyone can be an entrepreneur, and the whole point of the competition is to really promote that idea," explained Philippe Sommer, director of the Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership at UVA's Darden School of Business.
Teams presented ideas ranging from green home renovation services to a phone application that tracks the best deals at neighborhood bars.
The winning team hailed from the schools of medicine and nursing. They were awarded $20,000 for their hand-held retina camera that screens for diabetes-related eye disease.
The runner up received $10,000 and two honorable mentions took home $5,000 a piece.