The Next Big Idea™ - High School

The Next Big Idea High School version is a derivation of the annual Next Big Idea competition, which is held at NTID for its college students. NBI: HS is open to any deaf or hard-of-hearing students who are in grades 9-12 as of Spring 2022. The goal of NBI: HS is for students to come up with a product, business, service, or technology that solves a problem or eliminates an existing challenge for potential consumers and/or users everywhere. 

Upcoming Events

The Next Big Idea: High School has concluded. Find out who our 2022 winners were!

The Next Big Idea: High School will return in 2024. In 2023, RIT/NTID will host the Next Big Idea for RIT/NTID students – learn more about The Next Big Idea.

For any questions, contact Roxann Richards at

General Rules and Guidelines

High school deaf and hard-of-hearing students will have the opportunity to pitch their idea for a product, business, service, or technology to competition judges with a chance to win a cash prize. There will be two rounds of competition. During the first round five finalists will be selected to move on to the final round. In the final round, the five finalists will compete for cash prizes.


  • Contestants must be in 9th, 10th, 11th or 12th grade in Spring 2022 to participate in the competition.
  • Contestants must have some form of hearing loss.
  • Contestants must come up with a new product, business, service or technology and pitch their idea to the judges.

Contestants will develop a three-minute video explaining their idea.

  • The video must include a presentation using Microsoft PowerPoint, Google Slides, Keynote, or Prezi. 
  • The video must be uploaded on
  • See “How to upload an unlisted video” below.
  • Submit a link to the video along with a presentation file to

Competition judges will review the videos and presentation files and announce the five finalists for the final round on April 15, 2022.
Contestants are required to register for this competition. You can register here.

First Round
Contestants must create a presentation that outlines their idea and business plan, which must include the following information:

  • What is the product and/or service?
  • What is the goal of this product and/or service?
  • Who is your target audience?
  • Presentations must be no longer than 3 minutes.

Final Round—For those who were selected as finalists 
Contestants will modify and improve their presentation to answer more questions about their product/service:

  • What is your plan?
    • How much does it cost to make one of your units/operate your services?
  • Who is your target audience?
    • Age ranges
    • Group of people
  • Who are your competitors?
    • Why should people invest in your business?
    • How is your product/service different from others?
    • What do you have that your competitors do not have?
  • What are the costs?
    • Materials
    • Labor
  • Maximum of 7 minutes of presentation time.

You will have advisors that will be available to meet with you to give some feedback and advice for your final presentation.

Final Round Submission

Final Round Webinar Presentation Slot

  • NBI staff will email you with your presentation slot. 

How to Upload an Unlisted Video
To upload a video and make it unlisted:

  • Sign into or create your YouTube account.
  • Go to your My Channel Page.
  • Upload a video by clicking on create a video in the upper right banner, and then upload video. 
  • Change the setting to upload the video as unlisted and select the video. 
  • Click done to confirm. 
  • Copy and paste the unlisted link for submission.

To edit a video and make it unlisted: 

  • Go to the Video Manager and click on the video. 
  • Go to Edit. Under Basic information, you’ll see the option to mark your video as unlisted, public, or private. 
  • Select unlisted. 
  • Copy the video URL (found to the right of the video in Video Manager under video information). 
  • Copy and paste the unlisted link for submission. 

The title of your video must include your project title and your first and last name.


The winners will be selected and announced. Those winners will receive the following prizes:
1st Place -  $3,000
2nd Place - $2,000
3rd Place - $1,000


Register Now for the The Next Big Idea: High School

Stay connected with us here. For any questions, contact Roxann Richards at

Previous Winners

2022 Winners

Graphic displaying the winners of the Next Big Idea: High School 2022 event. The top half of the graphic displays two logos – an RIT/NTID Outreach logo at the top left, and the Next Big Idea logo in the middle. The bottom half of the graphic displays the winners with the text “High School Winners: 1st place; Enza and Gianna Visco: ASL Code. 2nd place; John Schulz: Rehear. 3rd place; Carmelle “Astrid” Zambori: Astro-botany.”