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SIE’s Fresh Ideas Competition has had an update!

  • The competition is now open for entries all year round.

The Competition looks to seek out promising ideas which can turn into business with real potential. Fresh Ideas is aimed at students and recent graduates from Scottish universities and colleges with great ideas, who are keen to look further into their idea and how they could convert it into a business or social enterprise.

Ideas don't need to be supported with fully-fledged business plans, and you don't need to have planned out a whole strategy either.

Enter Here

Now, for the first time Stage 1 is open and judged 10 months of the year with monthly prizes to be won. The monthly winners and other entries showing fab ideas will win £100 and move forward to the second stage in February and March.

The prizes for Stage 2 are pretty brilliant - £1200 and a personalised support package.

Fresh Ideas is Scotland's longest running competition dedicated to early-stage ideas specifically for students and many successful young entrepreneurs have taken their first leap through Fresh Ideas.

How do students or recent graduates enter the competition?

Eligible students and graduates can enter the competition online by completing the online entry form, accessible at www.sie.ac.uk.

Notes on Eligibility:
1. Entrants must be students or recent graduates at a Scottish University or College.
2. Recent graduates must be no more than 2 years post graduation.
3. Students or graduates can come from either undergraduate or post-graduate courses.
4. The competition is not open to University or College staff members
5. If entering a team, ALL members of the team must be eligible students or recent graduates.
6. Entrants who have entered in previous SIE competitions can apply to this one.
7. If you entered in an earlier month and did not win you can enter again providing the idea has been significantly updated.

Stage 2 kicks off with an Exploration Day - this invite-only workshop provides successful entrants with the opportunity to learn from SIE's resident experts how to improve their ideas and effectively communicate their idea. Entrants will learn how to optimise their chances of progressing to the next stage. You'll have a chance to alter your competition entry before resubmitting.


When can I enter Fresh Ideas?
Fresh Ideas is always open for entries! Each month's entries are judged at the end of the month. To allow SIE to run stage 2, there are 10 judging months. During February and March, you can enter stage 1 but those entries will not be assessed by judges until the end of April.

Can I talk to an Advisor before entering?
Yes. Please visit the SIE website to find contact information for your local advisor or contact info@sie.ac.uk

What happens if I enter in February or March?
Stage 1 entries received in February or March will be judged with April's entries in April. Winners & Highly Commended entrants will be invited to progress to stage 2 and attend the next Exploration Day. They may also be invited to join the SIE Entrepreneurs group.

When should I tick the 'resubmission' box?
If you have entered Fresh Ideas in a previous month with this idea, please tick the resubmission box. You can re-enter an idea that you did not previously win with providing the idea has been significantly updated. This is an opportunity for you to work with an SIE advisor to improve your idea.

During stage 2 you will also have the opportunity to improve your idea and submit an updated entry. If you are doing that, you should also tick the resubmission box to flag that to the SIE team.This will be covered when you attend Exploration Day.

What happens to my idea after I enter?
Your entry to stage 1 will typically be judged at the end of the month you entered. (The exception being February and March). You will be contacted by SIE with the result of the judges decision and next steps. If you were a winner or your idea was highly commended by the judges, you will be invited to progress to stage 2 and attend Exploration Day?

Who owns my idea?
Ownership of your idea remains with you. You are not giving up any rights to your idea by entering the competition.

Do I have to use the seed money on my idea?
No, it is your decision what you use the prize money on. You could use it to test elements of your idea and ready yourself for the next steps. An SIE Advisor is always available.