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About Ag Springboard

During Spring 2019 student teams will compete to win $7,500 in the Ag Springboard student business pitch contest. Like TV's Shark Tank — but for College of Agricultural Sciences' students! Ag Springboard is a signature event of the college's Entrepreneurship & Innovation Program.

Ag Springboard is a business pitch competition open to all students at Penn State. Teams consisting of 2-5 students, at least one of whom must be a student enrolled in the College of Agricultural Sciences, are eligible to compete. Teams will develop and pitch an innovative business plan addressing a need in the field of food, agriculture, ecosystems or bio-products and energy. 

Mark Gagnon, Harbaugh Entrepreneurship Scholar, explains:

In their business pitch, students must address issues such as competitive due diligence, marketing, financial projections and other aspects to make a compelling argument for their business idea.

Teams submit a 5-8-minute video pitch for the first round of the competition. Judges will select which teams will move forward to the final presentation stage  which is a live pitch before a judging panel of experienced entrepreneurs.

The $7,500 grand prize winning team, and $2,500 second-place winner will be announced that evening at a banquet.

Learn more at three Ag Springboard open houses during Fall 2018, all in 6 Armsby: 

  • Sept. 18, Ag Springboard open house, 6-7:30
  • Oct. 22, Ag Springboard open house, 5-6:30
  • Nov. 13, Ag Springboard open house, 5-6:30

Top Reasons to Participate

  1. Learn about entrepreneurship and whether you are an entrepreneur.
  2. Strengthen your resume — employers seek students who have competitive “real world” experiences.
  3. The odds of winning are great to claim the $7,500 prize — some contests have only 25 teams!
  4. Take your idea to the next level and start a company — winners will have an opportunity to connect with potential investors, build their networks and obtain valuable guidance.
  5. Be recognized for your efforts and abilities — build the winning team and experience success!
  6. Learn what it takes to pitch a business idea and develop these valuable career building skills while at Penn State.
Questions? Contact Mark Gagnon at mag199@psu.edu
This event is sponsored by Earl and Kay Harbaugh whose generous support is also used to fund a variety of entrepreneurial activities at Penn State.