September 29, 2014

Contest will let students try their best ‘elevator pitch’

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- A business concept competition at Southern Illinois University Carbondale will send one budding entrepreneur on to compete at a national contest where cash prices are up for grabs. 

The Office of Economic and Regional Development, in partnership with the Saluki CEO Corps, a College of Business registered student organization, is again sponsoring the Saluki CEO Corps Elevator Pitch Competition.  Students have just 90 seconds, about the time an average elevator ride lasts, to “pitch” their business concepts, just as they would in the business world to convince someone to invest in their ideas.  

The winner of SIU’s competition on Oct. 15 will advance to the Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization national conference, Oct. 30-Nov. 1, in Orlando, Fla. Last year, Alex Hutchinson, a senior marketing and finance major from Johnsburg, won the SIU competition and finished fourth at the national conference, earning $500. 

A workshop from 5 to 7 p.m. on Oct. 8 in Room 241 at the Dunn-Richmond Economic Development Center, 1740 Innovation Drive in Carbondale, will assist participants in developing elevator pitch presentations.  No pre-registration is required for the free workshop and contestants are not required to attend. Workshop participants can register there for the actual competition. 

The Saluki CEO Corps Elevator Pitch Competition is from 5 to 7 p.m., Oct. 15, also in Room 241 at the Dunn-Richmond Economic Development Center.  Any SIU student may enter by calling Saluki Ventures at 618/453-2083 no later than Oct. 14, or by sending an email to