Support Big Ideas

The Big Ideas network includes hundreds of individuals and organizations who support the contest in various capacities. There are 3 ways for interested supporters to get involved:


Each year, we look for 300+ judges to help us review submissions for each of our two contest rounds. Judges have the opportunity to preview and provide feedback on students’ innovative ideas, and help us to determine which teams move on as finalists and are ultimately selected as winners. Visit our judges page to learn more about becoming a judge!


Starting in mid-January, Big Ideas finalists are carefully matched with mentors from our mentor pool who have relevant skills and expertise to their project. Mentors are professionals from a set of diverse fields, ranging from business and finance expertise, to entrepreneurship experience, to technical expertise in one of our category areas, and more. Together, finalists and mentors work to refine the team’s project ideas, explore what it will take to implement it, and ultimately develop ten-page “final proposal,” due March 6, 2018. Visit our Mentor page to learn more about how to be included in our mentor pool!


The Big Ideas contest is made possible through the generous support of our partners. In addition to the Rudd Family Foundation, which provides funding to run the contest, our category sponsors provide the funding and resources necessary to make each of our categories possible. Categories change each year, and we are always open to exploring new sponsorship opportunities. Visit our partners page to learn more about the benefits of a Big Ideas sponsorship!