The Greater Arlington Chamber of Commerce in partnership with Arlington ISD and is proud to announce the “What’s Your Big Idea?” Entrepreneurship Contest. The “What’s Your Big idea?” Entrepreneurship Contest has challenged and empowered tens of thousands of students to think big and dream even bigger. This curriculum-based contest encourages 7th and 8th grade students to submit art and essays depicting their idea for a new business or product.
How to Enter
Unleash your ideas! The Greater Arlington Chamber of Commerce and the AISD are searching for the most entrepreneurial and innovative teens in AISD. Imagine, create and invent a new product or business and make your mark on the world in The “What’s Your Big Idea?” Entrepreneurship Contest. This essay and art contest is open to 7th and 8th grade students who attend the Arlington ISD.
You can enter the contest two ways: Submit your entry digitally using the "Submit Your Entry" button below. Or, you can submit a physical essay or art piece with the official Entry Form as page 1 (see last page of the complete contest guide) along with a typed or neatly and written essay (typed preferred) or advertisement design on a separate sheet of 8.5 x 11 paper.
Submissions are due no later than Thursday, January 21, 2021.
How to Come Up with Your Big Idea
What’s your creative idea for a product you could sell or a business you could create, own and operate? Think about your daily life, school, community and the
world as you read the questions below.
- What is the most annoying problem you find at home? at school? on the road? at the store? while online shopping? while working on the computer?
- What doesn’t work as well as you would like it to?
- What problem(s) would you like to see solved?
- If you could invent something to make your life easier or something that could help a family member or friend, what would you invent?
Use the brainstorming tools in the Complete Contest Guide to THINK about the problems you would like to solve, CREATE a product or service that could solve this problem and DEVELOP your business.
Write About Your Big Idea
- What do you sell? Describe your big idea to us. Is it a specific product people can buy? Or, is it a service that you offer to them?
- Who are your customers? Tell us about who you think would purchase your product or service - Adults or kids? Boys or girls? Someone with a specific need? Is it for families or for one person?
- Why is your idea so special? Tell us how your product is different from others that already exist. What companies would you consider your competition?
- How do you plan to tell people about your product or service? Explain how you want to communicate with your potential customers. Commercials on TV or YouTube? Advertising in newspapers or magazines? An event for people to experience your product or service.
- How will you manage your business? Describe how you would run your business. Will you have an online store? Or a shop that people can visit in person?
Create an Advertisement
- What do you sell? Your advertisement needs to showcase your big idea. Is it a specific product people can buy? Or, is it a service that you offer?
- Who are your customers? Your advertisement should match the personality of the people you think would purchase your product or service - Adults or kids? Boys or girls? Someone with a specific need?
- Why is your idea so special? Illustrate why your product is unique from others that already exist.
Make sure you include the basics of print
- Headline: A brief saying that gets the readers’ attention.
- Copy: The words in the ad that expand on the headline.
- Illustration: A photograph or drawing that gets the
- Logo: Design a distinctive symbol for a business such
as Nike’s swoosh or McDonald’s golden arches.
All entries should be submitted no later than Thursday, January 21, 2021, either via school district mail to AISD Career & Technical Education Department Office, 1141 W. Pioneer Parkway, Annex 4 or electronically.
Each entry must reflect the theme for the appropriate grade level. Students may enter in one or both categories, but must provide a separate entry form for each entry.
All essay entries must be less than 300 words, typed (preferred) or handwritten neatly on 8.5 x 11 paper.
All art entries must be original drawings and/or computer graphics. Art may not be 3D and must be on 8.5 x 11 paper—no legal-sized paper or poster boards allowed. (for organizational and judging purposes)
Each entry must have the entry form stapled as page one of the student’s submission including the student name, school, grade, category (essay or art), teacher who is providing contest direction and parent/guardian’s name and phone number. No identifying information should be included in the body of the essay or be visible on the artwork as these items may be used during the ceremony presentation.
Essays will be judged by the Greater Arlington Chamber of Commerce and the Chamber’s Partners in Education Advisory Council on the basis of grade-appropriate focus and coherence, organization, development of ideas, voice and conventions (grammar, spelling and punctuation). Art will be judged on basic principles of art and advertisement effectiveness.
For more information, contact the CTE Department at email@example.com.
Recognition & Awards
On Saturday, April 24, 2021 students who demonstrate the best entrepreneurial spirit through their Big Idea will be recognized as finalists at the Entrepreneurship Contest Awards Ceremony at the University of Texas at Arlington.
At the award ceremony, Top Winners for first, second, and third places for each grade and category will be revealed, then called back on stage to receive a prize package. First-place winners receive a scholarship to attend the exclusive one-week “The BIG Idea Lab” Summer Camp where students will learn what it really means to be an entrepreneur.
Last Year's Ceremony
- Prototype: A first, typical or preliminary model of something. Ex. A product prototype is presented to potential investors to illustrate why they should fund the business venture.
- Value Proposition: An innovation, service or feature intended to make a company or product attractive to customers. Ex. The value proposition of Disney+ is unique content only available to Disney+ users.
- Elevator Pitch: A brief speech that outlines an idea for a product, service or project. Ex. She gave an elevator pitch to explain the value proposition of her startup company.