Resource Night Recap: Pitches Highlight Penultimate Session

Resource Night Recap: Business Pitches during Penultimate ClassEach week you can read a recap of the previous session. This week, instructor John Zagula, founder of Ignition Capital, steps in for the Buerk Center for Entrepreneurship’s Amy Sallin to recap the penultimate class featuring a pitch competition. If you have questions about the lecture series, or any of the Buerk Center’s student competitions, email Amy at [email protected]

This class was the penultimate session of our whole business planning journey together and what a session it was. We focused on giving a great pitch, whatever the medium or format. Persuasion is key to success in all aspects of life, not just entrepreneurship. Developing and delivering a great pitch is the culmination of your ideas, your planning, and your passion.

Tonight, the students were the stars. After a short lecture on some pitch tips, 22 groups of you put your ideas and thinking to the test giving live elevator pitches to our seasoned judges. I applaud your courage, your flexibility, and your skills. Don’t forget: Tell ’em what you are going to tell ’em, tell ’em how you are going to tell ’em, tell ’em (in the order you said you would), and tell ’em what you told ’em.

Not able to attend the previous classes in person? Catch up on the previous classes here and watch the video from the marketing panel of experts to learn from the three BPC veterans.


“Speech is power. Speech is to persuade, to convert, to compel.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“All the great speakers were bad speakers at first.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” – Albert Einstein

“Be sincere, be brief, be seated.” – Franklin Roosevelt


6:00 pm in Paccar Hall, Shansby Auditorium (room 192)

Students will have final pitch practice and recap what is needed ahead of the UW Business Plan Competition.


Congratulations to EpiForAll for taking home the $15,000 Hollomon Family grand prize at the Hollomon Health Innovation Challenge! Read more about the competition on the Foster Blog and Geekwire’s detailed report.

The Alaska Airlines Environmental Innovation Challenge is coming up next on March 30! Twenty-two student teams advanced through the screening round and will compete on Thursday, March 30 at the Seattle Center Exhibition Hall. Be sure to follow us on Twitter @UWBuerk, Facebook @UWBuerk, and UWBuerkCenter on Instagram for updates on competition day using the hashtag #EIC2017.

Read why students call the competition experience “the best thing they did in college” on the Buerk Center blog.

Early applications will be accepted beginning Monday, March 13 for the 20th Annual UW Business Plan Competition. The BPC anniversary coincides with the 100-year celebration by the Foster School of Business.

  • March 13: Team registration to participate in the BPC begins! (link to registration page coming soon)
  • April 3: Deadline to submit 5–7 page executive summary to enter the BPC
  • Check out past entries online or stop by the Buerk Center office to view more. Make sure you’re aware of the Judging Criteria that the Screening Round judges will use to evaluate all the entries, and use the Submission Checklist to make sure your work is on track.


  • Our MentorConnect site is a great way to connect with a professional via email—including attorneys and people who specialize in IP issues—for advice, questions, and feedback. Connect with professionals in a variety of industries: Business Development, Cleantech, Consumer Product / Service / Retail, Energy/Environment, Finance, Intellectual Property, IT/Software/Online/Internet, Legal, Life Sciences, Marketing, Non-Profit, Operations, Production/Manufacturing, Research and Development, Sales, Venture Investing, and Engineering. These people all volunteer their time to help students, so don’t hesitate to reach out! Please do read the “Guidelines” section before contacting a mentor. FYI, the site requires a UW login, so if you’re a student from another college or university contact me for a guest login. Please note this resource is for students only!
  • View past executive summaries online from EIC participants (Resources tab, scroll down to Other Resources); and BPC participants (scroll down to the Learn by Example section).
  • Stop by the Buerk Center in Dempsey 227 to look at a wide variety of executive summaries entered into the EIC and BPC.
  • Review the Judging Criteria for the BPC Screening Round as you work on your 5–7 page executive summaries. Helpful hint: Use the Submission Checklist to help guide you through the judging criteria.
  • Check out our Startup Resources webpage.
  • Aren’t sure how to protect your IP? Curious about patents, trademarks, and copyrights? The UW Entrepreneurial Law Clinic is looking for new clients to apply for free legal advice for the upcoming Spring quarter. Questions? Email [email protected] or call (206) 616-5854.