Competitions, Prizes and Funding

Competitions and prizes to encourage you to take the first step towards entrepreneurship

Pitch Competitions

We host two pitch competitions every year: The Ideas Competition for innovators in the fall, and the Tufts $100k New Ventures Competition in the spring.

Ideas Competition: Problems Worth Solving (Fall)

The Ideas Competition is your first step towards learning how to develop an innovative idea into a solution. No experience necessary! Winning teams are eligible to win cash prizes up to $1000

Tufts $100k New Ventures Competition (Spring)

The Tufts $100k Venture Competition is the biggest entrepreneurship production on campus. Teams compete for prizes and in-kind services totaling more than $150,000.

Additional Funding Opportunities

Check out our additional funding opportunities for emerging students and alumni entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurial Initiative  Fund (Pilot)

The Tufts Entrepreneurial Initiative Fund is a pilot program where we provide modest levels of funding to individual students, student teams or student clubs to support them in their entrepreneurial initiatives.

Entrepreneurial Internship Program 

The Entrepreneurial Internship Program  funds students to work for otherwise unpaid internships hosted by early stage ventures (for-profit or not-for-profit) that meet eligibility requirements.

Tufts Venture Accelerator

The Tufts Venture Accelerator is an 11-week-long venture accelerator that provides structure, accountability, coaching and up to $10k of equity-free funding per team. 

Prizes and Awards

Prizes and Awards are presented to individuals or teams who demonstrate significant entrepreneurial achievement.

Montle Prize (Fall)

Paul Montle (Class of 1969) created the annual The Paul and Elizabeth Montle Prize for Entrepreneurial Achievement to commend Tufts undergraduate students who demonstrate outstanding entrepreneurial skills. Winners will be awarded a total of $35,000 which will be divided between three individual winners.

Ricci Prize (Spring)

The Stephen and Geraldine Ricci Interdisciplinary Prize is awarded annually within the $100k New Ventures Competition to a team best demonstrate interdisciplinary engineering design and entrepreneurial spirit in their venture. The winning team will take home $15,000, split evenly among the student team members.

Friedman Prize (Spring)

The Friedman Food & Nutrition Innovation $10k Prize, along with additional in-kind design and legal services. It is sponsored by the Tufts Food & Nutrition Innovation Institute and is awarded at the Tufts $100k Entrepreneurship Competition. We encourage diverse and creative submissions and interdisciplinary teams.


Use of generative AI

You may use ChatGPT or other generative AI platforms to help you develop an application. For each instance of text or images created with the help of generative AI, you must offer a citation used in the MLA style. You are also required to upload the entire chat transcript in PDF format. You will be prompted to provide the citation and transcript upload in each individual application form.

Conflict of Interest

Applicants to any Derby Entrepreneurship Center competition, prize, grant program, or the Tufts Venture Accelerator program during any given academic year that involves a cash or in-kind prize must abide by Tufts University’s Financial and Personal Conflict of Interest policy.