Two student teams will go home with $10,000 each to help make their business dream come to fruition as a result of the West Virginia Open for Business Statewide Student Business Competition Saturday, April 14, in Morgantown.

Teams will present final business plans to judges from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the WVU Life Sciences Building, Room 15 auditorium, and winning teams are expected to be announced at approximately 2:30 p.m. that day.

Ten finalist teamsfive in a lifestyles category and five in a technology/innovation categorywere chosen from across the state to present final business plans to a panel of judges in the final round of the year-long statewide competition.

In addition to the $10,000, each team will also receive legal services from Spilman, Thomas and Battle, PLLC ; accounting services from Dixon Hughes, PLLC ; office space at the WVU Business Incubator; and business cards and letterhead from Signs Plus.

The 10 teams are finalists from more than 50 teams that submitted summaries for their business ideas last fall. Judgesbusiness leaders and academics from across the statenarrowed the field in the fall. This spring, the finalists have been working to develop their ideas and business plans through a series of workshops and advice from experts.

The competition was open to all full-time students attending a West Virginia college or university.

WVU s Entrepreneurship Center held a Business Plan Competition at WVU for four years before extending it statewide.

This years event was made possible by a grant from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation, BB&T and the following sponsors: Core Concepts, LLC ; Spilman, Thomas and Battle, PLLC ; Dixon Hughes, PLLC ; Gallagher/Goodwin-Gregg Communications Group; Northwestern Mutual Financial Network-The Dobbs Financial Group; NASA Space Grant Consortium; WVU Research Corp.; Waterfront Place Hotel; and Signs Plus.

Located in the College of Business and Economics, the Entrepreneurship Center was established in 2002 by the joint efforts of the WVU College of Business&Economics; Davis College of Agriculture, Forestry and Consumer Sciences; WVU Extension Service; and the Office of the Vice President for Research&Economic Development. Among its many other activities, the Center offers internship opportunities in its new business incubator and recently developed a minor in entrepreneurship for WVU students.

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