ELIGIBILITY. SASEtank is open, but not limited, to everyone within the SASE community, both students and professionals. All team members must fulfill these requirements:
- Each individual can only enter one (1) invention into the program, and they may do so as an individual or a team. At least one (1) individual must be a member of a SASE chapter. Previous Finalists may not compete again. However, returning participants who were not selected as a Finalist may compete with a new idea. All Finalists must register for and attend the 11th annual SASE National Conference held this October where the Final Round is held.
REGISTRATION. The Preliminary Round Application opens on March 3rd, 2021 at 12 PM PST. The application consists of a written business pitch and a video pitch. There are 2 application waves, wherein the spots will be filled on a “first applied, first served” basis, priority given to those who apply during Early Action,
- EARLY ACTION — Apply by April 4th, 2021 at 11:59 PM PST. Selected Semifinalists are announced on Tuesday, April 13th.
- REGULAR DECISION — Apply by April 18th, 2021 at 11:59 PM PST. Selected Semifinalists are announced on Tuesday, April 27th.
★ Competitive advantages of applying Early Action include: 1) Greater chances of getting selected as a Semifinalist; 2) Being matched with your mentor and receiving 1-on-1 advice earlier; 3) Getting 2 extra weeks to develop your prototypes and business plan; 4) Being able to submit a revised or new idea again for the Regular Decision deadline.
PRIZES. The 1st place winner receives $1,500. The 2nd place winner receives $1,000. The winner of the People's Choice Award receives $500. A travel award of $100 per Finalist project will be allocated towards getting to the Final Round. Finalists are able to win both a ranked award and the People's Choice Award. The prizes will be distributed after the Banquet dinner at the SASE National Conference.
IDEA REQUIREMENTS. Ideas must be original to the individual or team. Software is eligible, as well as outputs from course projects or research. Full disclosure is required regarding the contributing resources and individuals. Collaboration with anyone who is not registered as a team member must be fully disclosed in the Preliminary Round Application. Their contributions will be reviewed, and if deemed substantial, the individual will be required to be added as a formal member of the team. Prototypes are not required for the Preliminary and Semifinal Rounds but are highly recommended. Working prototypes are required for the Final Round.
JUDGING. There will be judges for each round. The judges will have expertise in various areas, including engineering, science, technology, and business. They will use various criteria in their evaluations, such as those listed below:
- THE PROBLEM. What is the motive? Why is it important to solve it? What is the impact on the customers?
- THE APPLICATION. What is the key concept? How much progress has been made on prototype development?
- THE INNOVATION. Is the concept original? How does it compare to rival solutions for the same problem? Do the presenter have in-depth knowledge in the product field?
- THE MARKET. Who is your target audience? How does it compare to rival solutions that aim to solve the same problem? How thorough and well-developed is the business plan?
- THE PRESENTATION. How well do you present your idea? Is your pitch both informative and concise?
During the Final Round, the judges may also choose to consider more holistic criteria to determine the winning inventions.
- THE PRELIMINARY ROUND. Inventors will submit a business pitch and video pitch in their Preliminary Round Application. Project documentation supporting the development process will also be requested. The Early Action Application deadline is April 4th, 2021 at 11:59 PM PST. The Regular Decision Application deadline is April 18th, 2021 at 11:59 PM PST. The judges will score each invention using the criteria mentioned above. This scoring provides all entrepreneurs feedback on their invention and presentation, ultimately determining which inventions will advance. We will select approximately 6 innovations to advance to the Semifinal Round. Semifinalists will participate in the Mentor Fellowship Program.
- THE SEMIFINAL ROUND. This round focuses on the progress that has been made since the Preliminary Round. Semifinalists will present their progress in a video. Project documentation supporting the continued development process must also be included. The submission deadline is July 11th, 2021 at 11:59 PM PST. The judges will score each invention using the criteria mentioned above. In addition, inventors are expected to utilize the feedback provided in the Preliminary Round to further develop their idea. This scoring provides all entrepreneurs feedback on their improved invention and presentation, ultimately determining which inventions will advance. We will select approximately 4 innovations to advance to the Final Round. Finalists will continue to participate in the Mentor Fellowship Program.
- THE FINAL ROUND. Entrepreneurs will present their inventions at the 11th annual SASE National Conference in Atlanta, Georgia.* The Final Round will occur on Friday, October 15th, 2021. This event requires registration, but it is open to both the public and the SASE community. Inventors are expected to utilize the feedback provided in the Semifinal Round to further develop their idea. Finalists will pitch their product and provide a demo of their prototype to a panel of expert judges and a live audience, followed by a Q&A. The judges will score each invention using the criteria mentioned above, providing all entrepreneurs feedback on their improved invention and presentation. The audience will also cast their votes for their favorite. The judges’ scores will determine the 1st and 2nd place winners, and the audience vote will determine the recipient of the People’s Choice Award. The winners will be announced at the Banquet Dinner.
*In the instance that the SASE National Conference shifts into a full virtual conference, the SASEtank Final Round will also be held virtually.
If you have any remaining questions, please review the FAQ.