2024 Southwestern PA Youth Pitch Competition

Brought to you by BUILD.org

2024 Southwestern PA Youth Pitch Competition

 Brought to you by BUILD.org

Compete for prizes & win the Youth Entrepreneurship Competition title! Show your Pittsburgh Pride!

BUILD Pittsburgh’s 2024 Southwestern PA Youth Pitch Competition invites youth business teams from schools and community-based organizations across Greater Pittsburgh to create an entrepreneurial idea to support a thriving community using the BUILD Design Challenge. Each youth team will create a pitch, alongside an educator sponsor, and submit a video to enter the competition. 


The top 10 youth pitches will compete virtually for a spot in the Top 3 Finalist teams, who will then compete in front of a panel of judges at BUILDFest for nearly $10,000 in combined prizes for youth and their educators!


Engage Your Youth In Interactive Project-Based Learning 

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Help Your Youth Become The CEO Of Their Own Lives


Youth Entrepreneurship Competition Timeline & Details

  • January-March: Complete the 10-hour Design Challenge
  • April 2nd: Video pitch submission deadline
  • April 17th-18th: The top 10 teams will compete with Live Virtual Judges
  • May 15th: Final 3 Teams Pitch to Panel of Live Judges at BUILDFest

What Students Will Do

  • Empathize and identify a problem in their school or community.
  • Develop a Business Idea to help solve a problem.
  • Practice their pitches and create a 2-3 minute video pitch submission.
  • Top teams will pitch their idea live to a panel of judges in the final round to win cash prizes. 

Educator Benefits & Prizes

Professional Development

Receive Free 60 Minute – Professional Development Training on Design Thinking


Free Curriculum

Obtain Free 10+ hours of Curriculum on Human Centered Design

Learning Platform

Utilize an Interactive & Digitized Learning Platform

Competition Awards


Selection of BUILD Swag for Top 4 Teams & Educators


Cash Prizes

Cash Prizes for Top 3 Youth Teams:

  • 1st Place=$1,500
  • 2nd Place=$1,000​​
  • 3rd Place=$500

$500 Stipends For Educators

$500 Stipends for the Educator Sponsors of the Top 3 Finalist Teams

Winning Title

The title of 2024 Southwestern PA Youth Pitch Competition Champion!

Student Guidelines

Presentation Preparation

Video Preparation


- Judging Criteria

All criteria are judged on a scale of 1 (room to improve) to 4 (exceeding expectations).

- Idea

  •  The idea directly addresses the problem in the team's POV statement.
  • The youth's idea is innovative and offers a unique premise. 
  • There is a need for this idea in the real world.

- Prototype

  • The team has a clear example of their idea and an explanation of how their product, service, or campaign works by using a prototype (storyboard). 
  • The team offered a clear explanation of how their idea might work through a demonstration, video, or a corresponding method. 

- Presentation

  • The presentation had a clear introduction and closing. It follows the presentation guidelines and tips. 
  • Visuals were displayed to show the team's notes/and or prototype. Images and text formatting is clear, neat, and effort is evident. 
  • All team members participated in the presentation.

Clear voice projection was used.  


- What class can the Design Challenge be implemented in?

  1. The Design Challenge can be implemented in all settings with teens. Educators across the country have delivered the Design Challenge in academic courses, CTE classes, enrichment programs, and at Community-Based Organizations and nonprofits (Ex. Boys & Girls Club). The challenge takes about 10 hours to implement. It can be incorporated as a project-based learning unit to help youths learn empathy and practice designing solutions for communities.

- What are the due dates for the challenge?

All competition video submissions are due by end of the day of April 2nd.

- Where should I submit my teen’s video?

Competition video submissions should be submitted at this link. The submission form asks for the following:

  1. Name and emails of the youths that make up the business team
  2. The name of the business
  3. The school or organization the youths represent
  4. The educator’s name and contact information
  5. A shareable link to the video
  6. A shareable link to an accompanying powerpoint or slide deck
  7. Confirmation of completed Educator and Youth Reflection Forms

- How long does it take to progress through the Challenge?

It takes about 10 hours to progress through all 5 stages of the design challenge and to prepare the pitch.

- When will the final teams compete?

The final 4 teams will meet during the school day on May 15th, between 9am-2pm to pitch their business idea to a panel of judges.

- What happens after we submit our video pitch?

You will be informed on Friday, March 17th if your team will advance to the next round! If yes, teams should be prepared to deliver their pitch live on Zoom to a panel of judges on either Tuesday, March 29th, or Wednesday, March 30th. The top 4 teams from this round will move on to the finals on April 20th, 2023.

- What is the difference between my pre-recorded pitch and in-person presentation?

The video pitch should be 2-3 minutes long. Your in-person presentation may last between 2-5 minutes in order to give teams more time to thoroughly explain the details of their business pitch with the judges.

Want To Talk With Us?

Thinking of participating, have questions, or would like to learn more information from a BUILD staff member?​ Please email Emily Donato at EDonato@BUILD.org.​

Thank You To Our Partners

Presentation & Slide Preparation

Each business team should submit a 2-4 minute video of their business pitch.
On the video submission form, students should submit a video and the accompanying slide deck

1. Introduction – Greet the audience and introduce yourselves

2. Empathize: Meet our client – Introduce your client and describe their characteristics

3. Define: Point of View (POV) statement – State your POV problem statement (what problem or need you are trying to address with your idea)

4. Ideate: Our idea – State your team’s product/service/campaign idea that aims to help your client

5. Prototype - Your prototype is an example of your product/service/campaign. It can be a skit, storyboard, or physical model. Show a picture of your idea prototype, act it out, or show it for the camera! Explain how your product/service works, or explain how you will launch and run your campaign

6. Closing – Thank everyone for their time



1. iPhone, iPad, Zoom and Loom are all choices of recording tools for their video presentation 
2. Record with both students and their presentation in view
3. Record horizontally for the best view of the students and their presentation
4. Follow Presentation Diagram to the Right


- Make eye contact with the camera
- Notecards may be used as cue cards
•Pro Tip: Notecards should avoid having a full script
- Even when you are not speaking, don’t forget the camera is still recording!
•Be aware of your body language while you and your business partners are speaking
- Everyone has an opportunity to speak
- Professional dress is encouraged
- Practice makes perfect
•Practice how you will transition from each speaker
•Project your voice when you speak​

Follow positioning format Above

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Fill out this form to receive a free sample of our curriculum and to receive occasional email updates on how to bring BUILD to your community.