How do I protect my intellectual property?

If you have intellectual property or a proprietary way of providing a service or producing a product you do not need to disclose it on your application. Just let us know what it does and impacts it will have, without going into that type of detail. For example, when selling a cell phone you may talk about apps like a calendar, texting, and a web browser, but you don't need to say how those things work on the back end. We also ask our judges not to divulge any proprietary information.

We are a community that wants to help students, like you, succeed. So NVC and our other programs create a supportive environment one that can help you achieve your vision, not steal it.

Are international students able to participate?

Yes, both international students enrolled at GW and those who are studying abroad at GW are encouraged to apply.

How do I gain access to the money if my team wins?

Prize money will be paid to the winning ventures, including entities like Sole Proprietorship, LLC, LLP, and 501c3 and not to individual participants. Winning ventures may use the prize money for any legitimate business purpose.

Ventures have up to one year after the competition to claim their prize money. 

GW makes no claim of ownership in the venture in return for any prizes awarded in the Competition.

How can I get advice from experienced entrepreneurs?

Take a few minutes to speak with one of our friendly and experienced mentors in residence. Schedule an appointment today.

Are GW students the only ones eligible to apply to the NVC?

The GW New Venture Competition is open to individuals or teams of up to five people. Team requirements include:

At least one member of the team must be a currently enrolled GW student. It is required that the GW student is enrolled in a degree program, full-time or part-time, in a semester/term of the academic year in which the Competition takes place. A team may be comprised of up to five people, and at least 50% of the team must be affiliated with GW in some way. Learn more on our eligibility page.

Do I need to incorporate my venture to enter the NVC?


Can GW alumni enter the GW NVC?

Yes, as long as your business is 50% GW-affiliated. More information is available on the eligibility page

Can GW faculty members enter the GW NVC?

Yes, as long as your business is 50% GW-affiliated. Please see our eligibility page for more information.

Can GW staff members enter the GW NVC?

Yes, as long as your business is 50% GW-affiliated.

Are there any restrictions on the types of ventures that can enter the NVC?

Yes, your venture must meet our eligibility requirement in terms of team makeup, revenue, and age, and fall within one of the five categories: Business Goods and Services, Consumer Goods and Services, Healthcare and Life Sciences, Social Innovation, or Explorer Track. Please see the How It Works page for more details.

Can I compete in NVC if I am studying abroad?

Yes. However, for the final round, you must make yourself available via video chat to pitch to our live panel of judges. 

Do the GW students on an NVC team have to be owners of the venture?

Your venture needs to be 25% GW student-owned. If you have a non-profit, at least 25% of the board of directors needs to be made up of GW students.

Can recent graduates participate?

Yes, if you graduated in the same academic year as the competition takes place you're eligible. Example: If you graduated in December 2022, then you would be eligible to apply for NVC 2023. 

If I applied to NVC before can I apply again?

Yes, you can apply to NVC again. In fact, we encourage it. It can be the same idea or a different one. However, if your idea won any cash prize, you are unable to compete again with the same idea. You can compete with another idea.