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October 21, 2021

Students to Present Business Ideas at 3-2-1 Quick Pitch, Nov. 11

Applications to Compete Close Nov. 5
Students to Present Business Ideas at 3-2-1 Quick Pitch, Nov. 11
Students, like Lillian Uwanjye, can present three-minute quick pitches on new business ventures to a panel of judges at the annual 3-2-1 Quick Pitch Competition Nov. 11. In 2019, Uwanjye, an integrated science major from Rwanda, won her competition room for her pitch of a business idea to combat malnutrition.

University of Nebraska–Lincoln students can showcase their entrepreneurial, communication and presentation skills at the annual 3-2-1 Quick Pitch competition on Thursday, Nov. 11 in Morrill Hall. Hosted by the Nebraska Center for Entrepreneurship, the competition gives students a platform to propose a new business venture in a three-minute pitch to judges with the chance to win cash prizes.

Open to all UNL undergraduate and graduate students as well as local high school students, applications to complete are due by Friday, Nov. 5. Students can get more information and apply at: https://business.unl.edu/quickpitch.

At the competition, students are split into seven competition rooms by education level, where they face-off head-to-head in their respective groups. The judges, comprised of entrepreneurial-minded experts from across the state, grade the pitches and give feedback.

Uwanjye (right) and other competitors hear feedback from their room's judges.
Uwanjye (right) and other competitors hear feedback from their room's judges.

Following the judges’ deliberation, the top three pitches of each group receive a $333.33 cash prize. In addition to presenting their pitches, competitors can develop their ideas and network with other students, entrepreneurs and community leaders at a reception after the competition.

Megan Boyle, a past Quick Pitch winner and senior finance major from Elmhurst, Illinois, said, "It’s a completely different type of competition, forcing you to quickly adapt to your audience because you do not know who you are pitching in front of. Figuring out how you want to deliver your pitch can be a challenge since you only have the one chance to do so. Since the panelists were so established in their careers, they gave applicable feedback because they already experienced some of the obstacles we were facing. The competition was a great opportunity that pushed me out of my comfort zone.”

The competition will return to Morrill Hall for a second time. Students and judges gave feedback about how the space sparked creativity and conversation.

“Students will once again pitch their ideas against a backdrop of ancient mammoth skeletons, fossilized giant camels and interactive paleontology exhibits at Morrill Hall. The contrast is fun: dinosaurs are large and extinct while our students’ ideas are just coming to life,” said Dr. Samantha Fairclough, associate director for the Center for Entrepreneurship.

Dr. Sam Nelson, director of the center and associate professor of practice in management, believes pitching amongst the exhibits at Morrill Hall prepares students to thrive with the unexpected. He knew the uneasy environment could throw some students “off their game.”

“The exhibits at Morrill Hall demonstrate the nature of change on our planet and how it has continued to evolve over time. In Quick Pitch, we ask students to pitch ideas that will change the world and provide solutions to the challenges we are faced with,” said Nelson. “Our students traditionally give presentations in a classroom setting and it is important for them to realize they will often be presenting their ideas in nontraditional environments. We felt Morrill Hall gave us a great opportunity to create that unique environment.”

The event is sponsored by Hastings HVAC, Nelnet, Resort Lifestyle Communities, Cameron General Contractors and the Lincoln Chamber of Commerce.

To learn more and apply to 3-2-1 Quick Pitch, visit: https://business.unl.edu/quickpitch.