Lessons from the Pitch


The Pitch presentations are complete. The finalists have been selected. Students, breathing more easily, are standing proud of what they’ve accomplished. The volunteer Pitch leaders are delighted by what the students accomplished over the past five weeks…

So what was the purpose of the Pitch?

To select a studio to redesign? Well, yes, but not entirely…

As an organization, we are dedicated to developing young leaders, their character, their skill sets, by providing a space for each student to discover their dreams and a creative place to pursue them. To become a leader worth following, it is our job, our passion, to instill perseverance; what some may call grit, tenacity, or resilience.

How is that accomplished?

By providing opportunities to set goals, face obstacles, develop strategies and solutions to overcome them, and I believe, most importantly, to share stories of people who have experienced these things. We tend to focus on the success of others and forget to seek the story behind the success. How did they get there? How long did it take? What setbacks or challenges did they experience? How did they overcome each one and continue on towards their goals? Who did they recruit along the way to join their journey?

The Pitch is a great opportunity for us to facilitate and practice, in a short period of time, all of these experiences and skills.  Over the past five weeks we’ve seen the students and volunteer leaders work together though the gamut of opportunities to develop these skills. Each team was tasked with developing a plan to design a space, including a 3D layout, a complete budget, potential revenue streams, writing an executive summary, and finally, preparing a formal presentation for a panel of judges. Students heard from leaders in our very own community share their stories of dreaming big, taking risks, facing and overcoming obstacles, and developing tools along the way that strengthen them and prepare them for their next big dream. Students received personal stories of application and the importance of personal and daily affirmations, casting a vision and establishing personal values that will guide the way, and taking care of your mind and body through exercise. We witnessed new leaders emerge, revealing new confidence and passion. We observed teams with chaotic beginnings become focused and organized. As Pitch presentations came to an end we stood in awe as we cheered and applauded their efforts.

In the end, each student has their own individual story of perseverance through this unique experience. They’ve developed skills that will now be on their tool belt as they walk through the hallways of their schools, after school sports, and jobs; as they face difficult social situations, exams, interviews, and other hardships. They are better equipped for success and to be a leader worth following. They have a taste of what it means to pursue their dreams, and the opportunity to explore, be challenged, and finish well.

Dreamers keep doing,

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Elle Shroyer
Operations Manager

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