The Blackstone LaunchPad offers a variety of competitions throughout the year that are open to students of any major at UM. These competitions vary in length, topic, and prizes and we guarantee there is something for everyone! If you are interested in learning more or registering for one today, see below!

By participating in these competitions, you can earn points towards our Micro-Credential!

Past Competitions

Ideas Competition 


What is the challenge?

In this challenge, students compete by coming up with a simple business idea and answering five questions about it for a chance to win $1,000+!

The next chance to compete will be Fall 2023!

Passion Challenge - 10.7.22


What is the challenge?

This competition is an opportunity for students at the University of Montana and Missoula College to share their passions with the community and showcase their unique talents.

In order to participate, students must submit 3-5 of their best creative work and present them in a 1.5-minute pitch during a live event.

By competing, you can earn points towards a Blackstone LaunchPad Micro-Credential and we are giving away a total of $5,000 in prize money! 

This competition is open to all students at UM from any major and has a very low barrier of entry. 

This competition will be back next year, don't forget to apply! 

JRBSC Competition: Apply for 2023


What is the challenge?

What is the competition? 

The John Ruffatto Business Startup Challenge (JRBSC) is an annual competition hosted by the University of Montana College of Business and Blackstone LaunchPad. This competition provides students in the Montana University System the chance to pitch an idea for a business, product, invention, or entrepreneurial venture/startup. 

If accepted, teams will undergo a series of pitching and Q&A rounds: presenting their ideas to a panel of judges consisting of business professionals, community members, and executives for a chance to win part of $50,000 to invest in the idea they pitch.  

When is the next competition? 

Applications open in March of 2023. Reach out to  if you are interested in competing or learning more.