“Hey! Would you like a free T-Shirt?”

Daniel Donchev Daniel, Entrepreneurship, Involvement, Viterbi Life, Viterbi Orgs 0 Comments

“All you have to do is record yourself pitching a 30 second idea to solve a problem you’ve encountered on campus, in your day to day life, or in the surrounding community.”

This is the premise behind Spark SC’s annual 2-month long, campus-wide pitch competition dubbed, “1000 Pitches”. Participants are free to share absolutely any idea they have in a short video pitch that is then shared to the USC community through the 1000 Pitches Facebook page. It’s not about having the most fleshed out idea or the best presentation. We seek to stimulate students to spontaneously think about identifying problems they’ve recently encountered and to propose a potential solution.

We set up pitch booths across campus and try to interact with as many passing students as possible to meet our goal of recording 1000 idea pitches by the end of the two months. This approach allows us to reach the general USC student population, who may not already be familiar with entrepreneurial thinking.

All participants receive an incredibly soft, comfortable, and well-designed t-shirt in exchange for sharing their idea. At the conclusion of the competition, the 10 best pitches are selected by a panel and awarded $1000, which the students then use as a foundation to push their idea to the next level.

Spark SC started the USC branch of 1000 Pitches in the Fall of 2014, and we’ve continued the annual tradition since. Each year we’ve exceeded our goal of collecting one thousand pitches and spreading the message that everyone has an idea worth sharing! We also put on other events that serve to inspire a culture of innovation, such as the Startup Career Fair (check out my blog on it by clicking the link)!

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