Conductor Events

The Conductor to host national collegiate venture competition

Conway Institute of Music


Student entrepreneurs could win $15,000 in available prize money

CONWAYThe Conductor, a public-private partnership with the University of Central Arkansas, announced plans to host a National Collegiate Venture Competition that will award student entrepreneurs a total of $15,000 in cash prizes.

College students or recent college graduates with operating ventures are permitted to apply to the competition. There is no fee to apply.

Students may visit to apply.

“This is an amazing opportunity to catalyze a network of student entrepreneurs,” said UCA President Houston Davis. “UCA is proud to be at the center of this type of national competition.”

The application period opens Friday, Jan. 26, and the deadline to apply is Monday, March 5. The Conductor will announce the winners Wednesday, March 28.

Christina Madsen and Kim Lane
Christina Madsen and Conductor’s Kim Lane at a Startup Grind event

A judging panel of well-known venture capitalists and entrepreneurial icons will review the submissions for the competition and award a first-place prize of $10,000 and a second-place prize of $5,000.

“The National Collegiate Venture Competition creates a platform to celebrate successful student ventures, ‘dorm room founders’ and collegiate change agents,” said Kim Lane, COO of the Conductor. “This competition falls squarely within the Conductor’s mission to reduce barriers to entry for entrepreneurs, and to propel the success of student entrepreneurs.”

Unlike traditional business plan competitions, the National Collegiate Venture Competition is limited to operating ventures with actual clients and recurring revenue. To apply, companies must complete an application, submit a 60-second video and lean canvas and have a faculty sponsor from their college or university.

“The work of the Conductor with university faculty and students, as well as the community, has been a differentiator to other entrepreneurial support organizations, and that work has been recognized by entrepreneurs all over the world,” said Jeff Standridge, chief catalyst of the Conductor. “The National Collegiate Venture Competition is a normal next evolution in the Conductor’s role.”

Additional information about the competition is available at


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