Grants and Funding

Grants, Funding, Awards and Opportunities for Students and Faculty

Crowdfunding at RIT

Crowdfunding at RIT is powered by community funding and is a powerful tool for fueling initiatives through philanthropic giving. Through crowdfunding, you can partner with us on a number of projects. Then share this info with your friends, family, and colleagues. Together, we can provide a dynamic learning environment and embrace community involvement as a fundamental foundation of our mission. For more information click here!

FALL 2017

Energy Startup Competitions

The Energy Startup Competition is hosted by the Society for Petroleum Engineers (SPE) and Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship. The 2017 SPE ATCE Conference showcases the latest technologies in Oil and Gas. The competition is open to ALL emerging energy technology companies with application in the Upstream O&G sector. Competitors will receive visibility among leaders in the upstream energy industry, recognition as technology leaders, opportunity for cash prizes, networking with leading energy investors, and mentoring.

Finalist companies will present at the Startup Village at the 2017 ATCE Conference on October 10, in San Antonio, Texas. Finalist companies will receive complimentary admission to ATCE, and be eligible to receive a portion of $75,000 or more in cash prizes. Fore more information click here!


Startup Nations Award Nominations Now Open

The efforts of those that are behind entrepreneur-centric policymaking have an outstanding impact on the economy – enabling startups to scale, create new jobs and push the entrepreneurship frontier forward. To celebrate their achievements, Startup Nations recognizes innovative policy shapers and policy approaches from around the world through its Startup Nations Awards.

Nominate a startup policy champion today. Finalists and winners will be invited to the Startup Nations Summit and the awards ceremony on Tuesday, November 21, 2017, in Tallinn, Estonia, to share their experiences and accept their awards. Nominations will close August 31. Fore more information click here!


Berthiaume 2017 Innovation Challenge Final Competition

Awarding up to $65K in equity-free funding, the UMass Innovation Challenge Final Pitch Competition is April 6, 2017. Come and watch the top entrepreneurs on campus as they compete for funding for their startups in the Berthiaume Center’s biggest competition of the year! For more information click here!

VentureWell $25K for STEM Innovators

VentureWell’s E-Team program is a national competitive grant program that provides early-stage funding of up to $25,000 and cultivates opportunities for student STEM inventors and innovators to move ideas out of the lab and into the market. The multi-stage program provides grant funding, immersive workshops, and coaching to help student teams realize their projects’ full commercial potential. The application deadline to participate in the next cohort is May 3. For more information click here!

Create the Future Design Contest

The Create the Future Design Contest was launched in 2002 by the publishers of NASA Tech Briefs magazine to help stimulate and reward engineering innovation. The annual event has attracted more than 12,000 product design ideas from engineers, entrepreneurs, and students worldwide. The contest's principal sponsors are COMSOL and Mouser Electronics with Analog Devices and Intel as supporting sponsors. For more information click here!

MASS Challenge Accelerator

We are a no-equity accelerator. Our accelerators run for three to four months, depending on location. The startups participating receive free office space, intensive training, world-class mentoring, access to in-kind benefits from partners, and much more. They also compete for a share of more than $2M in equity-free prizes globally. And the model works. Participating in MassChallenge more than doubles a startup's likelihood of raising significant funding and reaching 15 employees according to an MIT study. For more information click here!

Lightspeed Summer Fellowship

Are you an aspiring entrepreneur looking for the resources, guidance, and connections to get your venture off the ground? Lightspeed Venture Partners is offering summer fellowships to support entrepreneurship and innovation among highly motivated engineering and CS students. Each selected team will receive $5,000 per team and $15,000 per team member, mentoring by one of Lightspeed’s investment professionals, as well as office space in Menlo Park, CA throughout the summer. Lightspeed also conducts a Venture Series “course” throughout the summer with the explicit goal of providing young founders practical knowledge on topics such as Hiring and Compensation, Venture Capital Economics, Pitching Investors, Initial Selling Strategies, and Career Advice. And finally, all Fellows are invited to join well known young founders and executives each Monday for lunch to learn about their startup experiences. For more information click here!

ALPFA Skype call with founders of Feat Sock and UMass Alumni

ALPFA is hosting a Skype call with founders of Feat Sock and UMass Alumni, Taylor Offer and Parker Burr, for a entrepreneurship workshop. A list of questions is already chosen to be asked and discussed with both professionals and at the end of the workshop, we will open the room for a Q&A panel for students and members to ask questions. For more information click here!

The Berthiaume Center for Entrepreneurship Innovation Challenge Final Competition

The University of Massachusetts Innovation Challenge Final Competition is the fourth and final event in the 2016-17 Innovation Challenge series. Come watch the top entrepreneurship teams of UMass compete for up to $65k for their startups! At the Final Competition, teams will compete in front of entrepreneurs, experts, consultants and sponsors of the event for up to $65K in funding for their student ventures. For more information click here!

TCU Richards Barrentine Values and Ventures® Competition

A unique annual competition for undergraduate students around the world to pitch plans for businesses, products or services that make a profit while also benefiting the environment, the community or a specific population. Presented by the Neeley Entrepreneurship Center. For more information click here! is a listing of challenge and prize competitions, all of which are run by more than 100 agencies across federal government. These problem-solving events include idea, creative, technical and scientific competitions in which U.S. federal agencies invite the public’s help to solve perplexing mission-centric problems. Challenge and prize competitions are one path that federal agencies take to drive innovation. More than 740 challenges have been run in the federal government since launched in 2010, but competitions date back several centuries. Did you know, for instance, that the 1927 Orteig Prize for fueled Charles Lindbergh’s famous transatlantic flight? An architectural competition conceived the U.S. Capitol’s landmark design, too. There are so many examples of competition spurring innovation. For more information click here!

F6S Website

F6S helps to connect you with accelerators, funds and investors along with providing help with free stuff, talent search and exposure. It also provides a huge network and resources to help grow your startup in the #1 global community. For more information click here!


Business is booming in our nine county region with an active startup culture, hundreds of advanced growth businesses and a healthy local company scene. RocGrowth was created to help entrepreneurs quickly find the right resources to grow their Upstate businesses, whether it's a Finger Lakes winery, a software startup or a rapidly growing clean tech company. For more information click here!

Draper Competition

The annual Draper Competition for Collegiate Women Entrepreneurs is hosted and organized by the Center for Women and Financial Independence, Smith College's initiative devoted to the support of innovation and entrepreneurship. The competition is designed to give undergraduate entrepreneurs an experience that will help them hone their business plans and elevator pitches. The goal of the Draper Competition is to provide the best educational and entrepreneurial experience of any undergraduate business competition. For more information click here!

eMerge Americas

With a clear mission of establishing Miami as the tech hub of the Americas, eMerge Americas has made its mark on the technology scene in a short amount of time. Once the idea was conceived, the Technology Foundation of the Americas was created to help advance the tech ecosystem. Now in its fourth year, Miami’s homegrown tech conference is building momentum, attracting a global audience, and connecting investors with innovators. For more information click here!

Trend Hunter's Future Festival

Trend Hunter's Future Festival is specifically designed to be the world's best innovation conference — a place for the world's top innovators to prototype their future. Ninety-seven percent rate it as the best innovation conference ever with a stunning 85% rating it the best business event in all categories. You'll experience next year's trends from the #1 trend firm, while prototyping 5 - 10 disruptive ideas using the same award-winning innovation workshops we've used to help NASA prototype the journey to Mars. For more information click here!

FALL 2016

Rochester Venture Challenge

Rochester Venture Challenge is an annual startup business competition that encourages entrepreneurship and recognizes new, high growth ventures in the Greater Rochester Region. To participate in the Rochester Venture Challenge, companies must be for-profit and located in the nine-county Finger Lakes Region: Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Orleans, Seneca, Wayne, Wyoming, and Yates counties. Companies should have a scalable business concept with high growth potential. Companies must be early-stage, as defined at the time of application by having less than $250,000 of outside cash investment and less than $500,000 in cumulative revenue (excluding research grants). For more information click here!


VentureWell $25K for STEM Innovators

VentureWell’s E-Team program is a national competitive grant program that provides early-stage funding of up to $25,000 and cultivates opportunities for student STEM inventors and innovators to move ideas out of the lab and into the market. The multi-stage program provides grant funding, immersive workshops, and coaching to help student teams realize their projects’ full commercial potential. The application deadline to participate in the spring cohort is January 25. For more information click here!


Stadia Ventures Accelerator Program

Stadia Ventures, a global sports business accelerator in St. Louis, MO, is currently seeking companies for its Spring 2017 Cohort. Applications are open for another 1.5 weeks (until Jan. 14th), so we wanted to extend our search to you and your vast network. We offer investments up to $100,000 for your startup, 12-week immersive business development boot camp and an extensive network of rockstar mentors and advisors. For more information click here!



The TAMID Group is a national, student-led organization offering motivated students experiential learning opportunities across consulting, finance, and investing. One unique initiative we are writing to you about is TAMID Tank 2017. This coming April, for the second time ever, student-run startups will have the chance to secure an investment of up to $100,000. TAMID Tank invites student-run startups from universities across the United States to apply for this invaluable opportunity. The 3 finalists will pitch to a panel of high-profile investors in front of a large audience in the beautiful Diana Oval space on the Barnard College campus in Manhattan. For more information click here!