Frequently Asked Questions
Who can participate?
The AppItUP Challenge is open to anyone with a current Penn email address who is a current employee, faculty member, or student at the University of Pennsylvania, including the University of Pennsylvania Health System. Individual participants, or at least one member of each team of participants, must have a valid Penn email address and be a currently active member of the Penn community (excluding Alumni or former employees).
What type of ideas are we looking for?
We are looking for the best ideas that can be successfully commercialized. This is why we have partnered with people who know and understand the current market and can help us select the best ideas. We are looking for a diverse range of ideas, but to help our judges we’ve divided them into four broad categories: VR/AR/Bots, Enterprise, Mobile Health, and Everything Else. We use the term "mobile application" broadly; any good company ideas with at least one mobile component should apply.
What is the Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and Bots Category?
This category includes mobile applications that focus on virtual and augmented reality technology. We're looking for the best applications for this emerging technology in any field including healthcare, marketing, medicine, etc.
What is the Enterprise Category?
These mobile apps are targeted at businesses. Anything that would be useful to a business falls under this category.
What is the Mobile Health Category?
This category includes mobile apps in healthcare. Apps in this category might provide practitioners with information, aid in clinical decision making, or be a reference for patients.
What is Everything Else?
This is our broadest category. Examples may include apps for consumers, social impact, games, or anything else.
How will my idea be protected?
Your idea will be submitted via our secure site www.appitupchallenge.com. Submissions into the AppItUP challenge will be kept confidential by PCI and our VC Experts during the submission and evaluating stages and if a submission is not chosen as a finalist.
What happens if my idea is in the pool of finalists?
If your idea is selected, you will be invited to participate in our AppItUP Event, where five ideas will be chosen for prototype development and company formation. Only ideas whose owners are present at the event will be chosen to move on to the next stage, so it is crucially important to attend if you are invited. If you are chosen to be in the pool of finalists, you will receive notification and a participation agreement at the email address that you provided upon submission.
Are there any prizes?
Yes, if your idea is in the final five, professional developers will build a working prototype and we will form a company to help launch your app into the world. This is the best support an app idea can receive! You can get as involved with the company as you want to be.
Can a team of people submit an idea?
Yes. Please indicate your team members and their affiliations with Penn in your submission. At least one member of each team needs to be a current member of the Penn community.
Can I submit more than one idea?
Yes, you can submit as many ideas as you want.
What will happen at the AppItUP Event?
At the event, our panel of VC partners will have a chance to ask you more questions. Based on the information you submitted and your answers to these questions our Development partners will decide which of the finalist apps they want to develop into working prototypes. If more than one Development partner is interested in building your prototype, they will have to pitch their services to you, and it will be your turn to choose! If you don’t have a team already assembled to run your company, we have invited the members of the Wharton Entrepreneurs Club and Wharton Founders Club to attend and, if they are interested, they may offer to lead these new companies as CEOs. Again, it will be your turn to choose, if they pitch their skills and qualifications to you.
What will happen after the event?
After the event, while our Development Partners are busy building the prototype, we will be busy creating a company. From this point forward, each particular company will be created in one of three different ways. AppItUP staff will help to make this determination, based on several variables:
What will happen after the prototype is built?
When the prototype is ready, the team will be able to pitch the product and the strategy for the company to all of our VC partners to seek seed funds for further growth of the company.
What if I want to get involved in the company formation?
You can! Please see the How it Works section for different ways to get involved.
What if I don’t want to get involved in the company formation?
If you don’t want to get involved, you don’t have to. You can assign your rights to the University, and we can attempt to commercialize the app for you. All you have to do is show up at the AppItUP event and be one of the finalists. Then you can sit back and reap the benefits, if your app is commercialized.
AppItUP is a program of the Penn Center for Innovation at the University of Pennsylvania