Ashland Street Cinema Proposal Deadline June 20, 2024 (5 PM)

We have some exciting ideas in mind, including a youth center for middle school through college students, start-up business spaces with short-term leases, a maker-space for creative purposes, and collaborations with local non-profits. If your idea is selected, you will have the chance to work with us to develop it further, with slight adjustments based on permitting or funding. Imagine having your name as the mastermind behind it all!
Submit your proposal by the deadline:

Ashland Street Cinema Category

Attention students! Submit your innovative ideas for consideration by our judges, and you could be a part of transforming the former Ashland Street Cinema building into a unique space that caters to the needs of young people. Our vision is to provide a place for socializing, finding purpose, and exploring new business ideas with low risk.
Ashland is looking for ideas that say


Make Your Idea Reality

Best New Venture Idea Wins $3,000!

The new annual SOU Business Venture Tournament is an opportunity for students to win up to $3,000 in award money by developing the best idea for a new start-up venture or business proposal. Other prizes include 2nd place $700, 3rd place $250, and most sustainable venture award $500.

All SOU students are eligible to participate in the tournament. The competition is open to all undergraduate degree programs at Southern Oregon University.

The Business Venture Tournament encourages students to Think Big and pursue dreams that may someday change the world. The mandatory Venture Workshop uses the student’s venture idea to educate students about the business aspects of any venture. The idea can be from a capstone, project, or other source.

Participants gain free hands-on experience with idea proof-of-concept, market research, venture promotion, and presentation skills while preparing for the competition.

The Tournament deliverables mirror real-world steps that new start-ups do when seeking venture capital. The unique experience is fun and winning will result in start-up money for venture ideas backed with solid planning.

Choose a Topic and browse this website to learn more!

Choose a Topic

General Timeline

Winter Term 2024

Students consider ideas that may come from capstones or projects and submit the entry form by March 15, 2024.
Supportive courses are discussed with advisor or Tournament Master.

Participants begin training for the competition in the mandatory Tournament Workshop in Moodle starting March 2024.

Students attend tutorials and receive training for the Tournament projects. The 1-minute pitch, business venture plan, and 10-minute formal presentation begin development.

Spring Term 2024

Participants complete the 1-minute pitch and begin a marketing campaign for student votes that count for 20% of the competition scoring. The business venture plan and 10-minute formal presentation are finalized.

June 2024

Final Competition and Awards Gala on June 6, 2024
5:00pm to 6:30pm
Britt Hall #217 (Top Floor)
FREE food and wine will be served. Small business mentors, resources & networking!

Awards are presented to 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and Sustainability Winners

Tournament Entry

All students enrolled at SOU in the academic year 2023-2024 are eligible to participate. Venture start-up ideas do not require full development for entry. The workshop will help students develop the idea during Winter and Spring terms with guidance for each Tournament project.

Note: The Tournament does not substitute for program degree graduation requirements.

Required Deliverables

Participants must submit three projects for judging:

  • Formal Business Venture Plan
    The plan defines the idea, product, or service and reports supportive research.
  • 1-minute recorded video “Pitch”
    The pitch is uploaded to the Tournament Voting Platform. Students then use social media to market the pitch and gain student votes for their idea!
  • Five-minute Formal Presentation
    Students present the venture plan to judges and share their passion for the idea with supporting evidence of marketability.
Guidance and Training

The Tournament Workshop provides free resources and training to all contestants. The mandatory free Tournament Workshop begins sessions in March 2024 until the final competition in May 2024. Students may also choose to take SOU catalog courses to supplement or add skills for a competitive edge. The mandatory Workshop, tutorials, and other free resources help students understand how to develop each project.

Excited to Play, But Not Ready

All interested students are encouraged to start early by taking courses and training to obtain a competitive advantage in the Tournament. Visit with your advisor and/or Tournament Master to discuss a course schedule that meets your goals.

SOU Faculty & Staff

The Business Venture Tournament includes all academic programs from all Southern Oregon University Divisions. The intention is to help make students aware of essential business aspects with any organization. It provides a platform that encourages creativity and development of ideas.





SOU Supportive Courses

Tournament Preparation The business venture plan is an essential part of planning for the success...


Workshops & Tutorials Participants in the Business Venture Tournament may not have an opportunity to...


Personalized Assistance University studies provide a solid foundation of skills relevant to the modern workplace....