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Sources: Jeff Hornsby, 785-236-1643,;
and Chad Jackson, 785-341-6243,
Web site:
News release prepared by: Katie Mayes, 785-532-6415,

Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2010


MANHATTAN -- Kansas State University's Center for the Advancement of Entrepreneurship is offering $18,000 in prize money to students with unique business ideas in the second annual "Next Big Thing" competition.

The competition provides K-State students from all academic disciplines with an opportunity for entrepreneurial thinking. An orientation session where students can sign up will be at 5 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 4, in Room 212 at the K-State Student Union.

Individuals or teams of students can compete in one of three divisions: product, service or graduate student. Participants will be offered a number of seminars throughout the semester to learn how best to develop their idea into a marketable business. Seminar topics include market analysis and research, financial planning and feasibility, and new venture operations.

Throughout the semester, students will fine-tune their feasibility plan to compete against others. The competition will then be whittled down and six finalists in each category will go on to an all-day competition Friday, April 23.

A first, second and third-place winner will be determined in each division, with $3,000, $2,000 and $1,000 in prize money to be awarded respectively. Awards will be presented at the K-State Celebration of Entrepreneurship banquet following the competition.

The Center for the Advancement of Entrepreneurship, in K-State's College of Business Administration, brings together faculty and students from across disciplines to foster entrepreneurship on campus and in communities across Kansas.

The competition and Celebration of Entrepreneurship banquet are being underwritten through a gift from Phil Howe, a Manhattan entrepreneur and chief executive officer of Kansas State Bank. Funding for staff support is being underwritten by Dave Dreiling, a K-State alum and CEO of GTM Sportswear in Manhattan.

Additional information about the Next Big Thing" competition is available at:

Questions also may be directed to Chad Jackson at 785-341-6243 or