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The Earlham Prize for Creative Capitalism
The Business Plan Competition for Social Entrepreneurship

Earlham is a place where social entrepreneurship is thriving.

The Earlham Prize for Creative Capitalism is a business plan competition that helps students move their passions, ideas, and ideals from theory to practice through the lens of social entrepreneurship and creative capitalism.

The competition provides a platform for students to transform their ideas into real world business plans.

Creating Social Change

The competition showcases how Earlham students channel their desire to create change into practical solutions to real world problems. Teams entered in this year's competition are focused on such diverse issues as food scarcity here in Richmond, educational opportunities for children in Africa and, as this video shows, alternative energy sources in Haiti.

Who Can Enter

Each team that competes for the Earlham Prize for Creative Capitalism must include at least one current Earlham College student. Teams may also include students at Earlham School of Religion, the Earlham MAT students, IU East students, Ivy Tech students or Purdue Polytechnic students.

About the Process

The competition has four phases:

  • Elevator Pitch: A two-minute presentation accompanied by a single PowerPoint slide.
    Video (1:53:25)
  • Cameo Round: Includes a business model canvas, a five-page paper about the business idea and a five-minute PowerPoint presentation.
  • Cameo Round Winners/Final Round/Judges Prep Review: This is the session like seen on Shark Tank.
  • Finals Round: A status report, a business plan and a 20-minute PowerPoint presentation.

Judges will look for innovation, social impact, quality of the materials presented and the entry’s potential for success in the marketplace.

Support from the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation

In addition to sponsoring the competition, The Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and the Earlham Business and Nonprofit Management program hosted workshops on:

  • Launching a Social Business
  • Scaling and measuring impact
  • Business model canvas
  • Developing a marketing plan
  • Elevator Pitch
  • Developing financial statements
  • Business plan development
Learn More

To learn more about The Earlham Prize for Creative Capitalism — The Business Plan Competition for Social Entrepreneurship, please read the rules and eligibility guidelines.

Methane Hub Wins 2017 Final Round

The winners in the Final Round of The Earlham Prize for Creative Capitalism 2017 — The Business Plan Competition for Social Entrepreneurship were announced at Goddard Auditorium.

Methane -hub

“Methane Hub” earned the first-place prize of $20,000 and office space at the Richmond Innovation Center. The winners are interested in transforming fecal matter into methane, which can then serve as an affordable and environmentally friendly alternative energy source in low-income communities in Haiti.

Spriland -nutrition

The second-place award of $4,000 went to “Spriland Nutrition.” This team came up with an innovative solution to tackle malnutrition in Vietnam. Their product is a protein bar made of insect powder that offers tremendous nutritional value at an affordable price.

Know -hunger -know -more

“Know Hunger, Know More,” a team composed of students from Earlham College and the Earlham School of Religion, garnered the third-place prize of $1,500. This group focused on tackling the pressing issue of food insecurity in Richmond and the larger Wayne County area.

Mashinani Farmers Initiative (MFI) Wins 2018 Final Round

The winners in the Final Round of The Earlham Prize for Creative Capitalism 2018 — The Business Plan Competition for Social Entrepreneurship were announced at Goddard Auditorium. Mashinani Farmers Initiative (MFI) captured first place and the $20,000 prize. They will partner with small-scale farmers in Kenya to address poor farm yields and a shortage of food.

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The second place team of Ali Shahram ’19 and LeAundre Knight ’19 received the $5,000 Blue Buffalo Award for their project Easy Connect, which integrates technology to existing and inefficient transportation resources in Richmond to create a more reliable, sustainable and effective transportation system for the city.

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Third place and $2,000 was awarded to The Breakfast Club, which is a food delivery service dedicated to solving an urban problem in Vietnam: the unhealthy breakfast routine of local students due to parents' and school system's inability to provide nutritious options.

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Fourth place and $1,000 was awarded to Resource Fuel, and fifth place and $500 was awarded to Richmond Reliable.

For More Information

For further information regarding The Earlham Prize for Creative Capitalism, please contact:

Gene Hambrick, Director Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and Executive in Residence, hambrle@earlham.edu or 765-983-1356.