Henry W. Bloch School of Management

Levitt Challenge Overview


The Aaron L. Levitt Social Entrepreneurship Challenge is open to all UMKC students from any school. The challenge begins with a kickoff event in the fall, where interested students and community members can learn more about the challenge. Once you have applied and been accepted, you will participate in a series of workshops over the spring semester, culminating in a competition day (late spring) during which teams or individuals present their projects to judges from the community. Winning teams will be decided at the end of the day.

You may bring an idea of your own or help a community organization with an idea of theirs. You may work on your own or with a team.

Who was Aaron L. Levitt?

The Aaron L. Levitt Social Entrepreneurship Challenge was made possible by funds established in memory of Aaron Levitt upon his death in 1988. In 2012, the funds were repurposed for this event by his son Jim Levitt and the Levitt family, a family that has been part of Kansas City's history for more than 90 years. Aaron Levitt was an entrepreneur who started his own furniture business. He was also a social entrepreneur with a deep commitment to giving back to the Kansas City community. He was deeply involved with UMKC, serving as president of the University Associates (now the UMKC Foundation) as well as chairman of the UMKC Board of Trustees. Levitt was active with the American Red Cross, the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce and the civic council. He also made local history as the first Jewish man to be invited to join the Kansas City Club and the River Club.

2013 - 2014 Event Timeline

September 27, 2013 Kick-Off Event
Bloch Executive Hall - 8am-noon
October 4, 2013 Application Deadline
October 10, 2013 Webinar
November 9, 2013 Workshop One - Identifying & Exploring Opportunities
December 14, 2013 Mid-Session Check-in - Follow-up to Workshop One
January 25, 2014 Workshop Two - Developing & Organizing a Viable Business Model
February 15, 2014 Workshop Three - Funding & Financing Your Social Venture
March 22, 2014 Workshop Four - Preparing Dynamic Business Plans
April 7, 2014 Business plan draft due
April 14, 2014 Drafts returned
Feedback reported back on each business plan
May 2, 2014 Final Business Plan Due
May 10, 2014 Workshop Five - Creating Presentations with Impact and Sizzle
May 13, 2014 Final Cut - Business plans have been rated and ranked, top 5-7 will move on to presentation phase
May 18 or 19, 2014 Final Scoring - Final scoring of the top 5-7 business plans, determining 60% of teams' overall score
May 20, 2014 Levitt Changemaker Event - Henry W. Bloch Executive Hall

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