Attention student technologists! The Imagine Cup 2015 season is officially underway, meaning it’s time to start thinking about how to turn your amazing app idea into a solution. We invite you to join us throughout the year for games, competitions, and training that will help make your vision a reality.
The Imagine Cup is not just the big technology competition you’ve been reading about over the past few months, it’s an opportunity to form your idea into a solid proposal, learn how to pitch it, and develop a business plan. You can do all this without the stress of worrying about investors or searching for professional experts to help you. We want you to spend that time on your project.
You’ll build the skills you need to launch a business and learn important life lessons that will help you throughout school and your career. Past participants have told us how much their public speaking, team building, and interview techniques improved after they became involved. It’s a pretty awesome thing to be able to put on your resume and a great way to launch into a career in technology.
The work you’ll do throughout the year is similar to the work done by real startups on projects in the same three categories as the competition–games, innovative technology projects, and life solutions to help change the world. Many of the projects transition into actual businesses and many of the Imagine Cup applications are available for the Windows Phone.
Throughout the year leading up to the competition, we’ll hold Software Development Lifecycle Challenges, a series of online contests tailored to each of the three themes – Games, Innovation and World Citizenship. These will help you build your idea even if you don’t participate in the big Imagine Cup competition.
In the Pitch Video Challenge, you’ll create a three minute video pitch to share your idea. In the Project Blueprint Challenge, you’ll create a 5 to 10 page project proposal documenting your solution strategy and think through the software development cycle. In the User Experience Challenge, you’ll create user experience documents for the project. In each of these challenges, the first place teams will win $3,000. And all the winning teams (10 per category) will receive feedback from professionals that will help them refine ideas.
In addition to those challenges, we’re excited to announce a new coding competition this year. We’re partnering with Microsoft Research for the Imagine Cup Code Hunt Challenge, an exciting competition that will help you build programming skills while you hack your way to cash prizes. Code Hunt takes place the third weekend of every month from September 2014 to April 2015 for just 48 hours. Students will be challenged to solve quick coding puzzles developed by the pros. It’s fast, fun and really cool. The student who scores the highest each month receives a $1,000 prize and every student who competes earns a chance to win the $5,000
grand prize sweepstakes at the end of the season. The first contest starts Sept. 20 so you should sign up now!
All of these competitions and challenges will get you prepared for the big Imagine Cup 2015 competition, where you’ll have a chance to join students from around the world for this exciting event. The teams that make it to the finals have a chance to win huge cash prizes, travel to Microsoft headquarters, and work with leading industry professionals.
Whether you’re a developer, crazy about technology, or just have a great idea you want to turn into a company, we hope you’ll join us and let Imagine Cup help put you in a position for success. Students 16 and older are invited to participate. Register now!