California State University, Sacramento

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ECS Virtual Pitch Competition

The College of Engineering & Computer Science is proud to announce the Second Annual ECS Pitch Competition, which will be held virtually this year. The competition is aimed at inspiring innovation and solving real-world problems. Students of all majors in the College of Engineering & Computer Science have the opportunity to present ideas on how to improve their lives, and their community, by solving a real-world problem.

Apply to the ECS Virtual Pitch Competition by November 2, 2020.

Besides up to $750 in prizes for the winner(s), the purpose of this event is to:

  • Connect Engineering and Computer Science students’ skills with entrepreneurial resources encouraging them to build sustainable businesses.

  • Accomplish linking engineering processes, critical thinking, creativity in solving a problem, persuasive presentations, teamwork and networking with value to real world stakeholders and employers.

  • Gain practical experience in demonstrating economic and social value in a sustainable non- or for-profit enterprise. In the process, they will network with stakeholders, employers, and startup founders of the region.

  • Connect startup methods such as the value proposition and lean business model canvas with engineering, computer science, or construction management projects.

Who can participate?

The pitch competition is open to all ECS students, faculty, and staff in all departments within the college. ECS Alumni from the past three years may participate as well.

Partners from other colleges or outside the university are encouraged.

Key Dates (Please note changes in dates!)

  • Monday, October 5th: Pitch Competition launches. Online application opens.
  • Monday, October 12th: Info Session, 5:30 to 7 pm.
  • Thursday, October 15th: Info Session, 5:30 to 7 pm.
  • Thursday, October 22nd: Pitch Workshop - "Moving From Engineering Idea to Startup," 5:30 to 7 pm.
  • Monday, November 2nd: Pitch Application Deadline at 5 pm.
  • Thursday, November 5th: Semi-finalists notified if selected for pitch presentation at 5 pm.
  • Wednesday, November 18th: Pitch Competition! – Selected semi-finalists will pitch to a panel of judges, 6 pm.


Carlsen Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Virtual Entrepreneurship Toolkit Series

  • 5 part series that will support you in refining your idea into a business model and preparing you for a 5-minute pitch.
  • Session on Wednesdays from 6 to 8 pm starting October 7th through November 4th.

Carlsen Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship: Pitch Crafting Workshop

  • An hour-long session to support you in translating your idea into a successful pitch presentation.
  • October 23rd at 3:00 pm, October 30th at 2:00 pm, November 3rd at 4:00 pm.

Carlsen Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship Virtual Office Hours

  • One-on-one consultation opportunities with the Carlsen Center’s Executive Director.
  • Find a time that works between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm Monday through Friday.

CleanStart Moving from engineering to startup

  • Here from an expert on how to take your engineering idea and turn it into a viable business pitch.

CleanStart Office Hours

  • One on one consultation opportunities with the CleanStart’s Executive Director.
  • Find a time that works between 2:00 pm and 6:00 pm Monday through Friday


  • Each pitcher or pitching team will give an oral pitch for their idea or business venture.
  • Each pitcher or pitching team will have 5.0 minutes to pitch their business ideas and 5.0 minutes for the judges to ask questions. The panel will be strict on time!

The Pitch(ers) should focus on the following:

  • Information about the problem/opportunity.
  • Product/service information and how it will solve the problem or take advantage of the opportunity.
  • Do you or your team have the ability (or expertise), skills, and passion to implement this business, nonprofit or produce the product or service.
  • Who will buy it (target market) & why; and The market and its size.
  • Price of the product/service, cost to produce it (revenue or business model).
  • Competition and competitive advantage.
  • Communicating your idea clearly and be concise and effective when answer judges’ questions.


  • Grand Prize from the College of Engineering and Computer Science $500.
  • Clean Tech Prize from CleanStart $250.

Pitch Competition Info Session Video

The College of Engineering & Computer Science Pitch Competition is run in partnership with the Carlsen Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship and CleanStart. The Carlsen Center at Sacramento State, which is open to all students of the campus and their partners in the region, provides comprehensive programming for the future entrepreneurs to move their ideas from dream to reality. CeanStart is a non-profit organization designed to accelerate the development of clean technology ventures in the Northern California region.