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Beacom's Invent-to-Innovate Competition Hosted at USD

Invent-to-Innovate Model Competition Winning students at the third annual Beacom School of Business Invent-to-Innovate (i2i) Model Competition.

VERMILLION, S.D. – The University of South Dakota Beacom School of Business hosted high school and college entrepreneurship teams at the third annual Beacom School of Business Invent-to-Innovate (i2i) Business Model Competition March 31.

Competitors earned cash prizes and honed their entrepreneurial skills by reacting to the different types of challenges that occur during the startup process helping them learn what it takes to successfully launch a business.

“The idea of a business model competition is to encourage students to not only come up with ideas but to start making them happen. The entrepreneurial process is about learning what works and what doesn’t,” said Howard Haines, an entrepreneurship instructor at the Beacom School of Business.

This year’s competition included guest judges John Meyer, Co-Founder/CEO of Lemonly, Chad Hatch, Partner at Bird Dog Equity Partners, Paul Ten Haken, CEO of Click Rain, and Sue Stoll, Regional Director of the South Dakota Small Business Development Center.

Full Results

High School Track

$1,000 - 1st place: Libby Gregg, Morgan Kerkman and Kaitlin Killian. Vermillion High School
$750 - 2nd place: Elizabeth Hjelm and Madison Dillon. Vermillion High School
$50 - 3rd place: Jacob Mebius, Tanner Steemken. Sioux City North High School

University Track

$2,000 - 1st place: Bruce Biegler and Sheldon Moysis. University of South Dakota
$1,500 - 2nd place: Aaron Bryer. University of South Dakota
$1,000 - 3rd place: Drew Utterback. University of South Dakota

$250 - Crowd Favorite: Brooke Assmus, Lexi Saunders, Emily Stockwell and Sarah Prescott. Vermillion High School


USD's Beacom School of Business was established in 1927 and has been accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) since 1949. The leading business school in the region, Beacom’s programs are consistently ranked among the top business schools in the nation by Princeton Review, U.S. News & World Report and others for its high-quality learning experience, student success, affordability, and high-caliber of faculty and students. Whether a student chooses face-to-face or online courses, Beacom’s programs emphasize real-world experience through professional organizations, quality internships and capstone projects.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 84 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.


Hanna DeLange
USD News