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Having a winning idea is one thing, but making enough money at it to support your ambitions and lifestyle is another. Start with a good idea that fills a need or void in the marketplace. Add a strong team, sound strategy and add a little capital, and watch your dreams become reality. As this competition evolves, visit this section to review timely information to help you turn your idea into a reality.

Round 1 Help - Business Model Canvas

Round 2 Help - The Pitch

West Virginia Business Information

National Business Information

Business Plan Writing

  • Business Plan Template & Guide

Financial Information

Starting a Business

  • Key Business Metrics

Social Entrepreneurship

  • What Is a Social Enterprise?
  • 5 Reasons Why Social Entrepreneurship Is The New Business Model (Forbes)

Intellectual Property

Intellectual Property, often known as IP, allows people to own their creativity and innovation in the same way that they can own physical property. The owner of IP can control and be rewarded for its use, and this encourages further innovation and creativity to the benefit of us all.

The four main types of IP are:

  • patents for inventions - new and improved products and processes that are capable of industrial application
  • trade marks for brand identity - of goods and services allowing distinctions to be made between different traders
  • designs for product appearance - of the whole or a part of a product resulting from the features of, in particular, the lines, contours, colors, shape, texture or materials of the product itself or its ornamentation;
  • copyright for material - literary and artistic material, music, films, sound recordings and broadcasts, including software and multimedia

For more information, visit the  US Patent and Trademark Office website.

Contact Marian Armour-Gemmen ( at the WVU Patent & Trademark Resource Center at the Evansdale Library (304)-293-9758. This is a free resource to all West Virginia students. 

WVU Resources

  • Jessica Vanderhoff
    WVU Library Research Services Department
    PO Box 6069, Morgantown, WV 26506
    (304) 293-0334
  • WVU LaunchLab

Recommended Books

  • Tough Things First (Ray Zinn)
  • The Ten Day MBA (Steven Silbiger)
  • The Millionaire Next Door (Stanley & Danko)
  • Seven Habits of Highly Successful People (Stephen Covey)
  • Talking to Humans (Giff Constable)