UConn Innovation Quest iQ from ideas to prototypes to companies

What is Innovation Quest (iQ)?

Open to all university students, UConn's Annual Innovation Quest takes place every spring semester, with the top teams given the opportunity to continue their journey into the summer.

Your quest begins with a series of workshops to prepare for the competition portion of iQ. Mentors are here to support you throughout the iQ journey. The competition will drive you to push your innovative idea forward into a comprehensive business plan, that could potentially be funded!

Lastly, selected winners will be invited to participate in the summer inQbator, which typically runs May through mid-June.

Who is Eligible to Participate?

If you have an idea, Innovation Quest is looking for you! From ideas to prototypes to companies — iQ wants to help you develop your innovative ideas into a business.

All University of Connecticut students, undergraduate and graduate, are welcome to participate! Students from over 82 majors representing nearly all of UConn's Schools & Colleges have participated since the first Innovation Quest in 2012.

Although it is recommended to join all workshop sessions to prepare for the competition, students may join in at any time.

How Can Innovation Quest Help Me?

Where will the next Google, Amazon, Apple, or PartsTech (one of the many successful UConn iQ companies) come from… or the next efficient energy source or biotech innovation? For aspiring entrepreneurs, this is an opportunity to gain recognition, rewards, and potential investor introductions for your ideas, projects, software, etc. We're talking about cool stuff here – it doesn't matter if you're bold or shy. Some of the greatest innovations come from passion projects. UConn's Innovation Quest celebrates both the understated and the brazen ideas that fuel progress and drive success.

Start Your Quest Here: 2024 EVENT CALENDAR

Innovation Quest (iQ) wants to help you turn your idea into a prototype into a company. The purpose of this competition is to provide student entrepreneurs with the opportunity of chasing after that idea they always wonder about, and actually turning it into a real business. While students can apply to the Innovation Quest competition at any time, we highly encourage participation in each of the Innovation Quest Workshops.


Workshops will be held virtually for 2024.

Each workshop in the series will provide teams with all of the information they need to fine-tune their business ideas to give them an edge in the contest application. We will cover all you need to know to answer each component of the iQ application - that is, our aim is to give you what you need to learn the most about your idea, how to market it, who to market it to, and where you can expect your idea to go. Innovation Quest is not a business plan competition. It is, instead, a business competition.

Most importantly, each workshop will provide participants access to mentors - iQers, successful entrepreneurs, investors, and more! Innovation Quest builds networks and relationships that are priceless. Receiving feedback from mentors will help you sharpen your ideas, keep you constantly thinking, and provide you with the constructive criticism you need to submit the best application you can to Innovation Quest.

Workshops run February 7th through March 6th.

Kickoff Workshop #1
Wednesday, February 7
6:30 PM (ET)
iQ Workshop #2
Wednesday, February 14
6:30 PM (ET)
iQ Workshop #3
Wednesday, February 28
6:30 PM (ET)
iQ Workshop #4
Wednesday, March 6
6:30 PM (ET)


2024 Competition

Competition Application opens: Thursday, March 7 at 12:00 a.m. (ET).

Competition Application closes: Wednesday, March 20, 2024 at 11:59pm (ET).

Prizes & Eligibility
Previous Winners



The Innovation Quest (iQ) Summer inQbator program is a series of six intensive workshops over the course of six weeks. Invitations to the inQbator go out to the top 10 finalists of the Innovation Quest competition, and the purpose of this 'bootcamp' is to provide finalists with a more in-depth crash course on how to get their businesses off the ground. Participants will interact with and receive personalized feedback from a variety of mentors, who range from iQ entrepreneurs to seasoned investors. The inQbator workshops culminate in "Investor Presentation Day" with each team pitching their ideas to a group of angel investors. Our aim at Innovation Quest is to turn ideas into prototypes into companies, and the inQbator workshops will help fine-tune your idea, give you the information you need on how to build a successful prototype, and provide you with extensive guidance on all you need to build a real world startup.

Past Finalists

ProVelocity Bat UConn Innovation Quest Finalist

ProVelocity™ Bat

Pisces Atlantic founder

Pisces Atlantic


Queen Bee

News Feed


"I'm grateful that Innovation Quest gave me access to the financial and educational resources to turn my mental-health game concept into a growing company, Ursa Mayhem Media. iQ gives participants access to fantastic mentorship from business professionals willing to share their well-earned knowledge and guide participants into further business development."

-Mary "Lexy" Vecchio
Owner/Lead Developer at Ursa Mayhem Media
iQ 2022 first-place winner

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