Social Entrepreneurship Student Pitch Competition

Create your social business plan. Pitch the experts. Win $3,500 cash.

Empowering the next generation of social entrepreneurs in Tampa Bay.

Inspired by Metropolitan Ministries’ social enterprises DoughNation and Inside the Box as well a social enterprises like Spring Back, this competition is designed to empower Tampa Bay’s students who seek to make a positive social impact through entrepreneurship.

11:30pm, March 29th, Amalie Arena, Hub 3 Stage


Cash Prize Sponsored By:

ConnectWise and Sourcetoad



March 12th – March 29th
Students Apply & Create Pitches

Any currently enrolled high school, undergraduate, and graduate students can apply to participate in the competition.

Immediately upon receiving acceptance into the competition via email, students may begin working on their pitch.


March 19th at 6:45pm
Information Session
The Entrepreneur Collaborative Center in Ybor

Pitch participants may attend our free information session to consult with social enterprise experts from Metropolitan Ministries and Columbia University.

Experts and event staff will be available to answer questions about the pitch and social entrepreneurship at the Information Session and via email and slack afterwards. Information Session Facebook Event.


March 28th
Day One of the Innovation Summit

Every pitch participant receives a free two-day ticket to the Synapse Innovation Summit at Amalie Arena ($300 Value).

We will have a dedicated suite where participants can cowork, collaborate, and eat free food. 🙂

It is not mandatory to attend Day One.


March 29th
Pitch Day at the Innovation Summit

From 10:30am – 2:00pm participants give five-minute pitches of their social startups to our judges at Amalie Arena.

At least one member from your team MUST be present to pitch. 

Winners will be announced on the Amalie Arena main stage at 2:30pm.

Winners of the Social Entrepreneurship Pitch will receive a $3,500 check. 

Pitch Requirements

PITCH LENGTH UPDATED: There will be 5 minutes total per team. Whatever time isn’t used on the pitch will be used for Q&A. We encourage that you leave at least a minute for Q&A.
Your pitch and deck should follow the below format:



Social Startup Name and Team Members



Why is it important?

What is the scale?

What are the root causes?

What are the contributing factors?

Share the most important results of your needs assessment. More info on needs assessments here.



What is the product or service you are offering?

How does it contribute to solving the social problem, be it directly or indirectly?

Speak to your company’s Triple Bottom Line.



Who is your paying customer?

What core problem are you solving for these customers?

What is your customer value proposition?


Market Opportunity

What does the competitive landscape look like?

What makes your business unique or better?


Business Model

Include and speak to your social enterprise business model canvas.

Download a blank canvas here.



What would be your plan for launching this social enterprise in 2018?

What partnerships or collaborations would be useful?

What resources, be it capital, supplies, or talent do you need to launch?

In the below Google Drive Folder you will find additional resources that will help you create your Social Startup. You are not required to read these documents or complete the exercises but doing so will put you at a significant advantage when crafting your pitch.

Access Google Drive Folder.

Pitch Competition Rules

  1. All competitors must apply here. After applying you must secure your ticket using the Eventbrite link that will be emailed directly to you. By registering on Eventbrite you secure your FREE two-day pass to the entire Innovation Summit ($300 value) and your spot on pitch day.
  2. At least one person from your team must be present at Amalie Arena on Thursday, March 29th from 10:30am-2pm to pitch.
  3. Competitors must be responsive to the Competition Organizers as they check in throughout the 10 days leading up to the event. Our organizing team trusts that you will put in your best effort in spite of not being in a centralized location, but we would like to have a pulse on your progress.
  4. Participating Social Enterprises should be brand new or early stage. This means social enterprises that have received seed rounds, or raised more than $10,000 in an FFF round, have membership in an accelerator or incubator are not eligible to apply.
  5. You DO NOT need to present a formal business plan for this competition.
  6. There is no maximum or minimum team size.
  7. Teams can gain advice and support from organizers, volunteers, sponsors, and others.
  8. Teams can work on ideas that have already been done. Social startups do not have to be “innovative.” If somebody wants to work on a common idea they should be allowed to do so and should be judged on the quality of their work. These days it’s hard to find something that’s fully original and teams might not know an idea has been done before anyway.
  9. All projects remain the intellectual property of individuals or teams that created them.
  10. Teams can propose modifying an existing idea to fit a new market (either population or geography) and/or present an idea that supports an existing effective supply chain or social service delivery system. Teams will need to clearly present what already works regarding the problem of interest and how their idea fills a critical need for the existing solution- providing continuum. I.E. Are organizations effectively providing affordable housing and employment support for homeless and low income persons but lack a comprehensive data management system that tracks individuals through the continuum of care?
  11. Teams can be disqualified from the competition at the organizers’ discretion. Reasons might include but are not limited to breaking the Competition Rules, breaking the Code of Conduct, or other unsporting behavior.