MAD Money Idea Challenge

Make a Difference through Social Enterprise

Fall 2016

Do you want to make a difference on campus, in your community, or in the world?
It just takes a small spark to ignite a fire of change – and that spark can be your idea!
Learn more about being part of the MAD Money, Hiram's new social enterprise idea incubator and idea competition!

What is Social Enterprise?
A social enterprise is one that uses entrepreneurial/business principles to organize, create and manage a sustainable enterprise that has a positive social impact on humans, animals or the environment.

What is the MAD Money Idea Challenge?
The MAD Money Challenge is a social enterprise idea incubator and competition. As part of the competition, students will participate in a workshop to help them develop, refine and prepare to pitch their social enterprise idea to a panel of judges to win the MAD Money of $1,000 1st Place and $500 2nd Place. This competitive award will be given to a Hiram student presenting the best written and oral presentation of a social enterprise idea (see definition above). The enterprise can be organized as a for-profit, non-profit entity or hybrid.


Important Dates

  • Informational Meeting - Tuesday, Sept. 27, 5-6:00 p.m., East Hall Forum
  • MAD Money Challenge Workshop - Tuesday, Oct., 25, 5-7:00 p.m., East Hall Forum
  • MAD Idea Challenge Registration – Monday, Oct. 24 - Friday, Nov. 4, 5:00 p.m.
  • Finalists' Presentations Due – Monday, Nov. 7, noon via Wufoo
  • MAD Money Challenge – Tuesday, Nov. 8, 5-7:00 p.m., Dix Hall, Kennedy Center

The Process
Informational Meeting – An information meeting will provide interested students with the definition of social enterprise, requirements, guidelines and judging rubric.

MAD Money Challenge Workshop – This workshop will provide students with the opportunity to come and pitch their concepts (elevator pitch) to a panel of people with business/social enterprise experience to get feedback. This will allow the students to revise their concepts based on the feedback before the final competition.

MAD Money Challenge Registration – Students interested in competing will complete the online registration form by Friday, November 4, 2016, which will be reviewed by the selection committee to determine the pool of finalists. The top finalists will be notified via email.

Finalists' PowerPoint Presentation Submission – Finalists are required to submit their PowerPoint presentation via Wufoo form by noon on Nov. 7, 2016.

MAD Money Challenge Event – The chosen finalists will have 6 minutes (PowerPoint) to present their idea to a panel of MAD judges, followed by 4 minutes of Q&A (by judges only). The decision of the judges is final.

Entrant Eligibility
All degree-seeking students currently enrolled* at Hiram College in the Traditional College, Weekend College, Community College Partnership Program, and graduate students in the MAIS program.

The competition is open to individuals or teams (of up to five team members). Ideas must use entrepreneurial/business principles to organize, create and manage a sustainable enterprise that has a positive social impact on humans, animals or the environment. Projects can be nonprofit, for-profit or a hybrid entity or event.

*To be eligible, students must be currently enrolled in courses during the semester that the Challenge takes place.

Entry Requirements
All participants must register and submit the MAD Money Challenge application via Wufoo by 5 p.m., Friday, Nov. 4, 2016. The registration application can be found at

In addition to your name, student status and contact information (and names of all team members if applicable) you will be asked to provide detailed answers to the following questions. Your responses to these questions will be reviewed by the selection committee to determine which ideas will move on to the final presentation phase of the Challenge. You have up to 500 words to respond to each questions, use the space wisely.

  1. What is the name of your concept?
  2. Social Problem Addressed: What is the social issue (human, animal or environmental) that your idea (product or service) seeks to address?
  3. Social Beneficiaries: Who or what are the primary beneficiaries of your social enterprise? Who or what are you impacting?
  4. Product or Service Description: What product or service will your enterprise provide? Why is this product or service unique? Be clear and concise. Make sure the reviewers "get it!"
  5. Target Audience and Market Size: What population will you target? What is the rough size of the market for your product or service? (Please include a rough calculation and a key list of assumptions.)
  6. Marketing Efforts: How will you market your product or service - A. to your customers? B. to your beneficiaries as stated above (if applicable)?
  7. Competition: What other companies or organizations exist that provide a similar product or service and/or operate to solve the same problem? What advantages and/or disadvantages does your product or service have?
  8. Management Team: Please describe your (or your Team's) skills to launch and sustain this idea. What other skills or expertise might you need and how will you require them.
  9. Timeline: Please describe your timeline to launch your idea? For fully scaling your operations?
  10. Business Model and Financial Plan: What are your initial costs and revenue projections? How will you fund your enterprise? How will you sustain your operations in the long-term?
  11. Enterprise Structure: What type of enterprise structure are you thinking of – for-profit, non-profit, hybrid?
  12. Social Impact: What is the social impact you hope to achieve? What is the goal? How will you measure your social return on investment?
  13. Additional Information: You can provide up to 5 pages of attachments (in a single pdf document) to share with the judges, i.e., diagrams, logos, financial charts, etc.

Judging Process
Judging will occur in two phases:

Phase 1: The first phase of judging will be based on entrants' written responses to the application questions (see above).

  • A committee consisting of Hiram College faculty, staff, alumni and other outside individuals with expertise in social enterprise will evaluate the written applications.
  • Five to ten finalists will be selected

Phase 2: The second phase of judging will be based on the in-person presentations that will take place on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016 at the MAD Money Challenge public event. The judging panel will consist of individuals from outside Hiram College, i.e., no faculty or staff, that have expertise in social entrepreneurship.

  • Each finalist will have six minutes to present their social enterprise idea.
  • This will be followed by four minutes of Q&A by the judges only.
  • Ideas will be judged on how clearly and concisely you describe:
    • The Social Problem
      • What is the problem? Where does it exist? Who and how many does it pertain to?
      • How complex is the problem your idea is wants to solve?
    • The Idea and Level of Innovation
      • What is the enterprise? How will it solve or address the problem? Does it exceed current solutions?
      • Are innovative or novel means/methods used to address the problem?
    • Social Impact of the idea
      • What is the value the idea provides to its target group and to society? What is the impact of the idea generates for its beneficiaries and for society?
      • What are the social goals?
      • How will impact be measured?
    • Reasonableness of the Idea and Planning
      • Does the idea seem to be realistically implementable?

MAD Money Challenge Winners 2015

1st Place Winner: Hamza Raja with F.O.U.R., an organic hydroponic healthy eatery system

 2nd Place Winner: Marley Oles '18 with Sole Hygenics, and antibacterial destroying device for hospitals

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