pitching bootcamp

september 5th-7th, 2022

The Pitching bootcamp was hosted by PIN Polo Universitario Citta di Prato in September 2022, and included eight project groups of students from each partner institution.

The SEVERE Pitching Bootcamp was an opportunity to perfect the eight social innovation projects from the Winter School, and to prepare a presentation to be made in front of an audience of investors at the final evening. During the three days of the bootcamp, students worked on the various aspects that make up a presentation, from the way in which to speak in public, to the preparation of the slides, from the incipit of the pitch, to the selection of the information to be shared. Furthermore, the groups had the opportunity to talk with mentors in order to receive valuable advice and feedback and get as prepared and ready as possible for the Pitching Night!

Over the course of three days participants worked in groups on their social innovation ideas and practiced for their pitch.

monday 5
welcome and mentoring sessions

09:30 – 10:00

welcome and warm-up

10:00 – 11:00

check-in and first assessment

11:00 – 12:30 

speed mentoring with specialists:

Rose Cawood-Campell: problem identification

Peter Robinson: proposal making

Ana Alfonso: design concept

Teresa Franquiera: financials

Silvia Sordi: social impact

Natalia Popielska: operations

Samuel Nyarko: route to market

Mark Anderson: pitching

12:00 – 13:00

definition of 24-hour strategy

13:00 – 14:00


14:00 – 15:00

deep dive mentoring session 1

15:00 – 16:00

deep dive mentoring session 2

16:00 – 17:00

check-in and second assessment

17:00 – 19:00

free time/homework

tuesday 6
special clinics

09:30 – 10:00

welcome and warm-up

10:00 – 11:00

special consultation clinics

11:00 – 13:00

special clinic presentations




Route to Market

Operational Strategy

Financial Projections

Social Impact


13:00 – 14:00


14:00 – 16:00

student rehearsal time

16:00 – 17:30

check-in and third assessment

17:30 – 19:00

free time/homework

wednesday 7
pitching night

09:30 – 10:00

welcome and warm-up

10:00 – 12:30

student rehearsal time

12:30 – 13:30

travel to florence

13:30 – 19:00

free time and final preparations

19:00 – 21:00

pitching night

Over the course of three days participants worked in groups on their social innovation ideas and practiced for their pitch.

Various workshops were organized in order to help the students to achieve their goal, including:

  • Speed mentoring: each specialist mentor had ten minutes chat with each group
  • Deep dive mentoring: each mentor took one team, focusing on a specific area and taking them through towards next stage
  • Clinics: students talked to mentors about specific challenges and fears for getting projects presentable
The pitches were structured and judged based on the following:
Introduction  5%
Prompt (defining the problem)10%
Project (Proposal)20%
Route to market15%
Operational strategy 10%
Financial projections (sustainability) 20%
Social Impact15%

Students have now:

  • developed public speaking skills;
  • presented their business idea in front of an audience of investors and collected important feedback; and
  • developed a more structured business project, which they will be able to test in the following months

after the bootcamp, it is now up to the students how to move their projects forward. but the mentors will also continue to be available to them, should they need further consultations.

In December 2022,  the SEVERE project team will a call for a new batch of trainees for 2023. They will undergo a somewhat similar program, however, will be done fully online. The first workshop will be held on January 24th, 2023.

The former trainees will also have the opportunity to become mentors themselves and share their journeys, and what they’ve learned!

In June 2023, as part of the final event for SEVERE, the best new student groups will have the opportunity to present their projects in Aveiro, Portugal to all the partners, the student mentors and former trainees, and other invited guests.