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Now Accepting Applications for eGames Startup Competition

Through your hat in the ring for NC State Entrepreneurship’s eGames. Check out these frequently asked questions to learn more!

Second place eGames winner smiling next to Tom Miller on stage

What is eGames?

Originating in 2009, the eGames is NC State’s annual startup competition, awarding over $100,000 to NC State entrepreneurs. There are two tracks for the competition – the student track and the Daugherty Endowment Track for officially registered startup companies who have licensed NC State intellectual property in the past three years.

More about the Student Track

The student track is open to all undergraduate and graduate student teams comprised of at least 50% degree-seeking NC State students which include SKEMA students. This track is split into two categories, the “Think” category, and the “Do” category in order to separate the early/idea-stage businesses vs the more established ones.  This means teams or solopreneurs can compete with an idea or business in the early stages – the ”Think” category – or with an established startup that has a product, revenue, or customers – the ”Do” category. Students don’t have to worry about which track to apply for, after filling out the application staff will determine which category your business fits into.

More about the Daugherty Endowment Track

The Daugherty Endowment Track has been a contributing partner of the eGames since 2016, with the primary goal of increasing the success of startup companies based on NC State IP. The Daugherty Endowment Track is open to officially registered startup companies who have licensed NC State intellectual property in the past three years — meaning their licenses must be currently active. The funds allocated to winning companies can be used for critical early-stage business expenses.  For the past five years, the Daugherty Track has awarded prizes totaling $50,000 each year – with first place receiving $25,000, second receiving $15,000 and third receiving $10,000.

Impact Awards

The eGames also features a variety of impact awards as possible prizes for student teams. In order to be considered for these awards, teams answer additional questions that explain why they believe their business has an impact in these areas. Even if your team does not make it to the final round of the competition, there is still a possibility that you can be awarded a $2,000 impact award – so don’t hesitate to throw your hat in the ring!

eGames Timeline

  • Feb. 20 – First round applications due by midnight
  • March 10 – Finalists announced and notified
  • March 27 – Business plans due from finalists to move to the semi-final round
  • April 8 – Finalist virtual Q&A with judges
  • April 18 eGames 2022 Award Ceremony at Talley Student Union from 5:30 – 7 p.m.

Info Sessions

We are hosting three info sessions to answer questions before applications are due. RSVP to join a virtual call and chat with our team. If you missed them and have questions about the eGames application, email us at

  • Jan. 25 | 4:00 – 4:30 p.m.
  • Jan. 31 | 11:00 – 11:30 a.m.
  • Feb. 9 | 4:00 – 4:30 p.m.


What type of businesses are allowed to compete?

All kinds! As long as your team meets the eligibility criteria on the first page of the application, we are accepting startups of all types, sizes, and industries from NC State students. We’ve had everything from bakeries to exoskeletons compete in prior years.

Do I have to have a team to compete?

No! Students may work in teams or individually. 

How do I find out if I qualify to participate?

The team’s founding members must contain at least 50% degree-seeking NC State students that are currently enrolled as either full or part-time for Spring 2022. Teams that have non-NC State students are still eligible to participate as long as ONLY the NC State student team members partake in any stage of the competition (i.e., Round 1, Round 2, live pitch day). Only fill in the information for NC State students on the application. Additionally, ventures that have received $100,000 or more in outside funding (including grants or awards) or ventures currently generating $50,000 or more in annual revenues are ineligible to compete.

Do I include a freelancer as part of my team?

No. Only include permanent team members. We recommend you only include founding team members. If you win award money, the money will be split between the members you list. 

One of the application questions asks if we have received investments from an outside entity. Do I include funding from external sources or previous universities?

Yes! You must include any funding you’ve received from friends, family, previous competitions, accelerators, awards, etc.

I’m worried my team won’t win, and the application looks long. Is it worth applying to the eGames?

Absolutely! While we largely recommend you apply if you are serious about the business idea you are presenting, teams often remark how useful the competition is by itself. While you may not win an award, you may learn some really valuable things about yourself and your business idea that will help either grow immensely. There’s more to your passions than the award money (though that money is pretty sweet)! In prior years, teams that won confessed they did not think there was a chance for them to win, so you never know! 

We have to submit a 1-minute pitch video. Can it go a little over that 1-minute mark?

No. Please keep your videos at 60-seconds max. Anything over 60-seconds will be disqualified. Remember that judges will be taking a look at this video, so do your best to pitch your idea, and don’t forget to smile! This video can be recorded with your phone (horizontal format is preferred) and you’re allowed to have all team members in the video or just 1 team representative doing the pitch. Just remember that team members must be active degree-seeking NC State students. Please remember to review the video to make sure the audio works and the lighting is good.

I’m working on this idea, but I’m spinning my wheels and don’t know where to go next. Help me!

Everyone has this feeling at some point. First, we’d recommend reaching out to your professors and advisors. Past that, we highly recommend you schedule a meeting with a team member of NC State Entrepreneurship. Just email us at and we can point you in the right direction.

A special thanks to all of our sponsors that make the eGames possible. For a full list of sponsors, please visit

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