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School of Business


ESB Financial Emporia Chamber

Dream It — Design It — Develop It, known as the 3D event, is a new venture idea competition that is open to students from Emporia State University and Flint Hills Technical College.

The Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce is partnering with the Emporia State University School of Business for the event, which will also allow the winning Emporia teams to compete against teams from Kansas State University.

The framework for the 3D event begins with participants, either individuals or teams up to three members, submitting a business plan that pitches a "big idea" to a panel of judges and qualifying for the next round in the competition. The semifinals will be limited to 20 teams or individuals. During the semifinal round, students will have three weeks to redefine their big ideas through faculty mentoring and workshops led by entrepreneurs in the community.

The semifinalists then have 15 minutes to pitch their final business plans to a panel of judges and go through a series of questions and answers. The top three teams will be chosen, and these teams will present at a gala event April 11, 2014, at Emporia State University. Ultimately, the 3D competition focuses on teaching students what it takes to be an entrepreneur.

Not only does this event give students insight to what it takes to start their own business, it also gives them the chance to turn their dream into a reality. Teams will be competing for cash prizes in the amounts of $4,000 for first place, $2,000 for second and $1,000 for third. The top three teams that place in the 3D competition will move on to compete against the top three teams of the K-State Launch — a similar competition held at Kansas State University. This competition will be held in Manhattan in late April.

Outlines and Guidelines

Student Qualifications

The 3D Competition is open to all full-time and part-time undergraduate and graduate students at Emporia State University and Flint Hills Technical College enrolled during the Spring 2014 semester. Non-students may advise the team; however, only students may present the plan to the judges during the competition on campus. The concept and venture must demonstrate student management and ownership.

Team Qualifications

Individuals may submit a concept. However, entrepreneurship teams are encouraged. Student teams should not exceed three students.

Concept Qualifications

3D is for new, independent student ventures in the concept stage or seed stage. Generally excluded from entry are the following: buy-outs, expansions of existing companies, real estate syndication, tax shelters, franchises, and licensing agreements for distribution in the local market. Plagiarism of patents or copyrights will result in disqualification.

Limit on Ideas

Teams or individuals may submit only one idea for the competition.


Representatives from chosen teams must be present and able to attend the following: Semi- finalist will be pitching ideas on April 3rd and 4th during the times of 8am and 5pm. The top three finalists must attend the 3D Gala event on the evening of April 11th


Written Executive Summary

The written executive summary must be submitted in electronic, PDF format, by midnight, Thursday, February 27th, to A confirmation email will be sent Friday, February 28th, at noon. If students do not receive an email they need to contact Jessica Buchholz at 620-341-5371 or

The executive summary presents the idea for initial evaluation in a short and compelling form. This is not a research report. It is a sales pitch! The effort involved in preparing the concept requires the team to carefully and realistically assess the opportunity. This action is the first step in developing a business plan. The idea feasibility, when completed, will present the key information needed to evaluate the opportunity, without going into the depth that a full business plan requires. The completed executive summary should be no more than three pages.

The type of information you need to communicate to the reviewers of your business idea include:

Concept: Make a compelling statement about what you are proposing to do. Is this a product or a service, and what exactly is it? Does this idea solve a pain/frustration or address a critical want or need?

Feasibility: Give a reason why your concept should be done. If you are proposing something that is cutting edge, you need to give us some reason to believe it can be developed and you know where to get the expertise to do so.

Market potential: Is there a market opportunity for your idea? Who are the target customers? How big is the market? Is it growing?

Business Model: If this business can be financially sustainable, how will you propose to make money?  Non-profit business models are also welcomed, but these businesses must be able to sustain their business.

Competition: Do you know who the competition is?  What is your competitive advantage?

A panel of judges will determine the semi-finalists by reviewing the executive summaries. The top 20 teams will then make oral presentations on April 3rd and 4th to a separate panel of judges who will then determine the final three teams. The final three teams will present at the 3D Gala on April 11th, and the winners will be announced.

Oral Presentation Guidelines for the Semi-Finalists and Finalists

Note: These guidelines are for all oral presentations given in the 3D competition held on April 3rd and 4th, 2014 from 8 a.m. to 5pm. All teams must develop a visual aid to accompany their oral presentation. 

•Your visual aid should be no more than 12 slides long and cover the information outlined in the written executive summary. You should assume that the judges will not have read your written concept, so the visual aid should provide a complete explanation of the concept. A suggested outline is:

 1. Intro: What's your idea?

 2. Management: Who's on your team?

 3. Market Need: Who are your customers?

 4. Value Proposition: Why will they buy?

 5. Competition: Who's your competition?

 6. Strategy: How do you generate sales?

 7. Financial: How many will you sell? At what cost?

 8. Plan: What are your next steps?

  • Time limits for the oral presentations will be 10-15 minutes, with 15 minutes allotted for question and answers. A common strategy is for one member of the team to give the bulk of the presentation while other members provide support in areas of their respective expertise. It is to be determined by each team how they would like to present.


  • During the semifinals, teams will present in front of only the judges and assistants for the 3D competition. No general audience or other teams are allowed to hear the presentation.


  • A laptop and projector/screen will be provided.


  • Remember oral presentation should be compelling and persuasive! This is not a research report, where you demonstrate that you did the work, but a sales pitch where you convince the judges that you and/or your team can succeed.


  • The top three places will be determined from the presentations on April 3rd and 4th. These teams will also be expected to give a 3-5 minute pitch at the 3D Gala event on April 11th. This pitch is an oral presentation only; no visual aids will be permitted. The winners will be determined by a panel of judges present on April 11th - judge’s decisions are final.


  • The winners of the competition will be named at the event on April 11th. Awards will be given to the top three places in the following amounts:
    • 1st Place $4,000.00
    • 2nd Place $2,000.00
    • 3rd Place $1,000.00


  • If students compete in teams, prize monies will be divided equally among team members.


  • Placing in the competition does not guarantee that teams will have investors.


For more information on the 3D competition; please contact Jessica Buchholz at the School of Business at 620-341-5371 or


3D Competition Documents

3D Competition Timeline 2014

Outline and Guidelines

3D Workshop Flyer