A Winning Idea!
Kimberly Barbato ’11 never heard of an elevator pitch competition until she came to Bay Path. Now, after taking first place in the Elevator Pitch Competition at the prestigious 5th annual 2008 Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation’s Entrepreneurship Initiative Awards Ceremony, she’s discovered that her love of public speaking combined with a great idea can take you to the top!
Surrounded by an enthusiastic band of supporters that included faculty, her advisor, the president of the college, friends, and teammates from the basketball team, Kim bested a field of 13 presenters to receive a $1,000.00 first-place award for her “Healthy Habits” pitch. This is the third time in five years that a Bay Path student has taken first place, and our students have placed in the other years.
In her journey to the podium, Kim’s first step was to make her pitch at Bay Path’s own elevator pitch competition (sponsored by the College’s Entrepreneurial Program under the directorship of Professor Lauren Way). After being selected to represent the College at the Grinspoon competition, Kim spent hours perfecting her presentation. “One of the things that helped me was I was able to make my pitch in front of the Innovators’ Roundtable*,” states the first year legal studies major. “They gave me valuable advice, such as to make my closing statement more personal; emphasize the passion I have for my idea; and, most important, pretend that everyone is interested in my idea and use that as my starting point.” Their advice was valuable.
At the official Elevator Pitch Competition, Kim was poised and confident. Until she heard her name called: “I was surprised because the competition was tough. There were so many great ideas. I truly did not know how I did until my name was called.” Kim’s advice for future pitchers: be positive and just go for it!
The Winning Pitch:
Healthy Habits allows you to take a photo of the food you eat with your cell phone, and instantly analyze your meal for portion size and nutrition by checking it against an image matching database. The results—recommended portion size and nutrition content—are fed back to your cell phone. The program also allows you to track your food intake by uploading your meals onto your personalized Healthy Habits Web site via your cell phone. In this hectic world, it’s a perfect and convenient solution to help one lead a healthy lifestyle.
*The Innovators’ Roundtable is comprised of area entrepreneurs who serve as an advisory board to the College’s Entrepreneurial Program.
The 5th annual 2008 Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation’s Entrepreneurship Initiative Awards Ceremony was held on Tuesday, April 15, 2008. The colleges and universities that participated in the Elevator Pitch Competition included: American International College, Holyoke Community College, Elms College, Greenfield Community College, Mt. Holyoke College, Smith College, Springfield College, Springfield Technical Community College, Western New England College, and Westfield State College.