The Social Venture Plan Competition

Student and professional

Each spring, the Center for Applied Learning in Seattle Pacific University’s School of Business, Government, and Economics sponsors the Social Venture Plan Competition — a unique event designed to encourage SPU students from all majors to develop entrepreneurial projects that can make a difference in the world.

How It Works

The Social Venture Plan Competition encourages teams of students from diverse disciplines to develop a written plan that addresses dual bottom lines: social and financial. Participants tackle a felt social need while proposing a way to provide sustainable funding through a business activity. 

Business people, entrepreneurs, and other community partners evaluate and score the plans, after which competitors present their projects to faculty, staff, students, and judges at a live trade-show display event on the SPU campus. The teams with the highest cumulative scores from the two phases of the competition win cash prizes.

Would you like support from graphic design, illustration and other art students in developing a visual brand identity for your social venture project? Apply for Branded, a 12-hour day of intense interaction during which young designers, illustrators and other artists pair up with aspiring social entrepreneurs to create logos, web templates, venture names and other design elements for social venture plans. More details on the event and how to apply can be found here


Here is the 2016 schedule.  Dates may be subject to change.

  • November 12, 2016: Kick-off Information Session, McKenna Hall 111, 11:05 a.m. (Food will be served.)
  • January 13 - March 2, 2016: Weekly resource nights to help you develop and write your social venture business plan. These sessions may be attended on an à la carte basis or for credit as BUS 3682.
  • February 9, 2016Intent to Participate forms due.
  • March 11, 2016: Final written plans and official Submission Forms due.
  • April 6, 2016: Coaching sessions for all competing teams.
  • April 14, 2016: SVPC Showcase, Upper Gwinn, 2 to 6:30 p.m.

Rainier Valley Track

Through a partnership with Urban Impact, the SVPC will be offering a special $500 prize for the plan that best accomplishes economic development in the Rainier Valley neighborhood of Seattle. Teams interested in this option may have the chance to be paired with an entrepreneur from the Rainier Valley as a partner and advisor. Teams on the Rainier Valley track in the SVPC will also be eligible to compete in Sharks at the Beach, a Shark Tank-style follow-up event. More information will be posted as we have it. For questions, contact the Center for Applied Learning ( or 206-281-2942).

For More Information

See the competition’s FAQsofficial rules2015 workshop schedule, or the 2015 competition specifics. You can also contact the Center for Applied Learning at or 206-281-2942.

SVPC Sponsors

Recap of Recent SVPC Showcase Winners

The results are in and the winners are . . . 

2015 SVPC recap

2014 SVPC recap


“We had extraordinary access to both business and academic experts. They helped guide us in the mechanics of starting a business — researching our market, creating a business plan, sharpening our purpose and definition, and engaging both the public and potential investors.”
SVPC competitor

Develop Your Plan

BUS 3682 is a nontechnical, workshop-style course designed to help you develop an outstanding social venture plan and compete in the SVPC. Each session concentrates on a specific element of the SVPC planning template.