The Scheinfeld Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation hosts a two-tiered business plan and pitch competition for Santa Barbara City College (SBCC) entitled the Scheinfeld Center New Venture Challenge. The competition is open to SBCC students and other college students in Santa Barbara County, as well as area high school students to promote youth entrepreneurship. The competition serves as a capstone experience to/ community college students in entrepreneurship and career technical studies and as a capstone offering to the high school students participating in the Virtual Enterprise programs run by the Santa Barbara County Educational Office Regional Occupational Program (ROP) and other organizations.



The Scheinfeld Center is the first to offer a local business plan competition serving community college and high school students in the area. This provides an opportunity to local area high school and community college students with common interests and goals to interact, network, and prepare for a competition and potentially advance their business ideas. This program bolsters the pathway from area high school entrepreneurship programs to SBCC's entrepreneurship program and promotes the Scheinfeld Center and this opportunity to high school students. Young or old, entrepreneurs are given an opportunity to be recognized locally for their entrepreneurial spirit.


Event Summary

The competition has two tiers: a high school level competition and a college level competition. Students are required to submit applications and follow uniform guidelines for consistency in presentations and judging. Community executives, bankers, investors and entrepreneurs are invited and selected to volunteer to judge the applicants' business plans, choose finalists, and judge at the competition. Students are first judged based on their application and approximately ten (10) finalists from each tier will be invited to pitch at the Scheinfeld Center New Venture Challenge. The Scheinfeld Center New Venture Challenge takes place on SBCC campus for half day in a lecture hall, and is followed by an awards banquet the following week for students, parents, and mentors.


Sponsored Awards

The winning students receive various levels of cash awards (or other opportunities) depending on the awards raised and participating sponsors. Current awards total over $15,000 for cash, scholarship and various in-kind opportunities.


Sponsored Banquet

The Awards Banquet (at an off-campus facility) is sponsored by the Spirit of Entrepreneurship Foundation. A distinguished "special" guest speaks about the importance of entrepreneurship, and in particular accelerating youth business ownership and education. The awards banquet honors the winners of the Scheinfeld Center New Venture Challenge and is a generous fundraiser for the next year's awards.



The competition rules, organization and coordination are managed by Julie Samson, the Director of the SBCC Scheinfeld Center, under the direction of Melissa Moreno, the Dean of Educational Programs at Santa Barbara City College.