The Diamond Challenge was created in 2012 to expose high school students to entrepreneurship as a viable career path and provide them with an opportunity to learn about the entrepreneurial process as they put their ideas for new businesses into action.
Since its launch, almost 2,000 students from around the world have participated in the Diamond Challenge.
The Diamond Challenge is the cornerstone of the Paul & Linda McConnell Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative at the University of Delaware Horn Program in Entrepreneurship. The initiative aims to inspire the next generation of world-changers by providing world-class educational experiences centered on creativity, innovation and action-oriented programming.
Youth offerings are based on the emerging science of entrepreneurship – a combination of academic research as well as real-world and industry best practices – which emphasizes evidence over individual experience and isolated studies.
The Diamond Challenge encourages students to put their ideas into action by participating in one of two competition tracks: Business Concept and Social Venture. Students can compete by pitching in person at one of our sites or by submitting a video pitch online.
How it works:
- Participants work in teams of 2-4 to recognize an opportunity, conceive of a new model for a business or social venture, pursue the opportunity, and validate the model by “building a venture like a scientist.”
- A state-of-the-art curriculum focused on how to practice evidence-based entrepreneurship guides these activities and also offers advice for preparing the competition’s two deliverables: a written concept and a pitch.
- Open to all high school students
Students from around the world are eligible to participate if they:
- are enrolled in a secondary school or educational program;
- have a team with 2-4 students;
- have a teacher, parent or community member who is willing to serve as the team’s advisor.
Choose a Competition
If the primary purpose is to solve a customer problem that by doing so will generate revenue and profit, then the business concept competition is right for you.
If the primary purpose is to solve a social problem and make a positive impact on people or the environment, then the social venture competition is right for you
Several notable enhancements have been made for the 2017 Diamond Challenge, including:
Prize pool of $100,000
Semifinalist prize of $1,000 per team (DOUBLE what we’ve offered in the past!)
Live Social Venture pitch sites*
More semifinal round slots!
For More Information: