Student Startup

The Student Startup competition brings together high school students during SXSW EDU to pitch their business ideas.


Photo by Steve Rogers.

Photo by Steve Rogers.

2019 Student Startup Finalist - Vincent Dinh and Nicholas Podolak

I believe that participating at SXSW EDU gave us the experience to go out and try different things, to be bold in what we do, and this could be seen by showcasing our app to five different LISD schools as well as getting into contact with the board of directors of LISD.

Vincent Dinh and Nicholas Podolak
2019 Student Startup Finalist / Screenwise

2018 Launch Winner - Aarushi Machavarapu

Winning the Student Startup Competition in March 2018 lifted me up and empowered me to continue working and dreaming big.

Aarushi Machavarapu
2018 Student Startup Competition Winner / Threading Twine

2019 Student Startup Finalist - Koko Yee (Clutch)

SXSW EDU provides students with an incredible opportunity to bring their voices to the table. This is necessary for both teens and older attendees, especially since the work teachers do is for students.

Koko Yee
2019 Student Startup Finalist / Clutch

About the Student Startup Competition


The Student Startup competition supports youth entrepreneurs, serving as a platform for high school students to showcase their business ideas. The competition provides students with a remarkable opportunity to showcase their talents, validate their business ideas, and gain experience.

Selected finalists will present their startup product to a panel of judges and a live audience at SXSW EDU, March 9-12, 2020.

Additionally, finalists and attendees will have ample opportunities to connect through various social events during SXSW EDU.

The application has now closed. For more information on the Student Startup Competition please reach out to

For frequently asked questions and answers, check out the Student Startup FAQ.

Get Involved

Join Us for SXSW EDU 2020

Register to attend the 2020 SXSW EDU Conference & Festival by Friday, November 22 to save $165 off the walk-up rate.


Student Startup Competition History

Learn more about the history of the Student Startup competition by browsing a full list of past startup finalists and winners.

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