Student founders of five University of Maryland startups are gearing up to compete in the final round of the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship’s top business competition, the Pitch Dingman Competition. The Dingman Center at the Robert H. Smith School of Business hosts the annual event, to be held this year on March 7, 2019, in the Grand Ballroom of Maryland’s Stamp Student Union. More than 500 students, faculty, alumni and VIPs are expected to attend to watch top student entrepreneurs pitch their businesses to an expert panel of judges to compete for a total of $30,000 in seed funding.
Robert G. Hisaoka
On November 15, 2018, 250 attendees filled Frank Auditorium in Van Munching Hall to watch the Pitch Dingman competition semifinals, chaired by Robert G. Hisaoka ’79. The event features undergraduate, graduate and PhD student founders of 10 exemplary startups across the University of Maryland, College Park. Each team who advanced to the semifinals was vetted through a quarterfinals round by a judges panel of alumni entrepreneurs. Through Hisaoka’s generous donation, each semifinalist is named a Hisaoka Entrepreneur, providing them access to funding and mentorship regardless of the results of the competition.
Thanks to a generous commitment from Robert G. Hisaoka, a 1979 business graduate, students at the University of Maryland will soon have new ways to explore entrepreneurial pursuits and connect what they learn in the classroom with the real world of business and venture creation.