Skip links

36|86: Student Edition

Join us for 36|86: Student Edition

36|86: Student Edition, part of 36|86 Entrepreneurship Festival, is an opportunity for student entrepreneurs to network and learn about what is happening in the startup world. The main event is the student pitch competition where 12-15 companies will compete for a total of $60k!


36|86: Student Edition applications are now closed.

Participation Benefits

  • Exposure as a finalist before, during and after 36|86: Student Edition
  • Two free 36|86 Entrepreneurship Festival passes
  • Connection to a mentor through LaunchTN
  • Travel stipend for companies traveling from outside of Middle TN
  • Potential to engage in LaunchTN PortCo Program

Awards + Opportunities

Companies with the top four scores will receive a cash prize. Judges will have the discretion to award cash prizes within the ranges below.

  • 1st Place – Up to $20,000
  • 2nd Place – Up to $15,000
  • 3rd Place – Up to $10,000
  • 4th Place – Up to $7,500

The top four winners will also be eligible for the LaunchTN PortCo Program, providing access to strategic planning support, investor connections, corporate connections, talent recruitment and bundled services.


  • Teams must have one member currently or recently enrolled (December 2017/May 2018 graduates are eligible) at a Tennessee university or community college
  • Companies must be in one of these categories: Social Enterprise, Consumer Goods/Services, Commercialized Technology, Software
  • Teams must be comprised of 2+ people
  • Ventures with revenues (excluding SBIR/STTR grants) that exceeded $50,000 in the prior 12 months are excluded, as are ventures that have raised equity capital in excess of $50,000 from sources other than the founders or their friends and families.
  • Teams entering 36|86: Student Edition are encouraged, but not required, to be established as a legal entity. Winners will have 60 days following notification of their award to establish a legal entity, in order to receive their cash prize. If winning teams are not eligible to claim their prize within 60 days, they will forfeit their winnings to the runner-up.
  • Finalists must participate in two pitch practice sessions with LaunchTN assigned partner.

Pitch Format + Judging Criteria

Each company will have 4 minutes to pitch with time for 2-3 questions from judges. Companies will be scored on the below categories. Judges will evaluate the proposed product or service, as well as the team’s ability to execute on the business model.

  • Problem
  • Solution
  • Progress
  • Looking ahead
  • Team
  • Gut Feel

2018 Timeline

  • March 1 – Applications Open
  • June 4 – Applications Close
  • June 28 – Finalists Announced
    12-15 total companies will be selected
  • July 9 – Finalists paired with Entrepreneur Center/Mentor for pitch prep
    Each finalist must arrange for two pitch prep sessions with assigned EC or Mentor (finalists are welcome to schedule more if desired)
  • August 28 – 36|86: Student Edition in Nashville, TN

Join Our Email List For Updates

Be the first to get updates on 36|86 Entrepreneurship Festival, including hot speaker announcements, networking opportunities and so much more. Join our email list today!

* indicates required
Read More
Return to top of page
Get a free 36|86 VIP upgrade!

Giveaway Alert:
Ending 11:59 PM on June 30!

Buy a General Admission Pass for the southeast’s premier entrepreneurship festival and be entered to win a free VIP upgrade (a $399 value).