Future Entrepreneurs and Leaders Compete in Elevator Pitch 2018

2018 Elevator Pitch competitors

BURLINGTON, VT - Champlain College's Build Your Own Business (BYOBiz) Program, Career Collaborative, and Office of Institutional Advancement present the 11th annual Elevator Pitch Competition on Tuesday, March 6 at 8 p.m. in Champlain College's Alumni Auditorium, 375 Maple St. It is sponsored by Heritage Automotive Group and is free and open to the public.

The Elevator Pitch is a competition in which aspiring young job seekers, social activists, and entrepreneurs have 90 seconds to impress a "suit," a person playing the role of a valuable contact for the competitor. What's the incentive? First prize is $500, second prize, $300, and third prize, $100.

A total of 50-80 students, across all majors and grade levels (including graduate students) compete in the preliminary round. This is ultimately narrowed down to 18 finalists, who compete in front of a judges panel of local business leaders for first, second, and third place, as well as for crowd favorite, voted on by the audience.

This year's finalists are:

Social Advocate/Non Profit Category

  • Abigail Barr, Computer Forensics ('19)
  • Quinn Boyd, Accounting ('18)
  • Nancy Champagne, Digital Forensics ('19)
  • Kohle Feeley, Management & Innovation ('21)
  • Stephanie Felix, Business Management ('19)
  • Keman Huang, Accounting ('18)
  • Absa Samba, Social Work ('20)

Job/Internship Seeker

  • Don Atherton, Game Production Management ('21)
  • Meghan Donovan, Computer Information technology ('20)
  • Aaron Millet, Game Programming ('18)
  • Jessica Priesing, Accounting ('18)
  • Colton Orr, Game Art & Animation ('18)
  • Caryssa Yates, Accounting ('18)


  • Mia Andreozzi, Accounting ('21)
  • Lucas DeLima, Game Production Management ('21)
  • Lisa Lord, Communication ('21)
  • Thomas Payne, Business Administration ('19)
  • Andersen Pinckney, Game Design ('20)
  • August Stevens, Finance ('18)

UPDATE: 3/7/18

The finals of the 11th Elevator Pitch Competition were held Tuesday in Alumni Auditorium, sponsored by Heritage Automotive Group. Nineteen students participated in pitching their best ideas to a "suit" in the Champlain elevator. Winning pitches were delivered by:

  • Nonprofit/Social Advocate: 1st, Absa Samba (Social Work '20); 2nd Keman Huang (Accounting '18); 3rd Nancy Champagne (Digital Forensics '19); and Audience Favorite: Absa Samba. 
  • Job/Internship Seeker: 1st Colton Orr (Game Art & Animation '18); 2nd Aaron Millet (Game Programming '18); 3rd Caryssa Yates (Accounting '18); and Audience Favorite: Colton Orr. 
  • Entrepreneur: 1st Andersen Pinckney (Game Design '20); 2nd Thomas Payne (Business Administration '19); 3rd August Stevens (Finance '18); and Audience Favorite: Thomas Payne.

The event is presented by Champlain College's Build Your Own Business (BYOBiz) Program, Career Collaborative, and Office of Institutional Advancement. For further information about the Champlain College Elevator Pitch Competition, go to https://www.champlain.edu/centers-of-excellence/build-your-own-business/elevator-pitch-competition or contact Bob Bloch, BYOBiz Program, rbloch@champlain.edu, 802-865-6490 or Pat Boera, Career Collaborative, boerap@champlain.edu, 802-651-5991.

Founded in 1878, Champlain College is a small, not-for-profit, private college in Burlington, Vermont, with additional campuses in Montreal, Canada, and Dublin, Ireland. Champlain offers a traditional undergraduate experience from its beautiful campus overlooking Lake Champlain and over 90 residential undergraduate and online undergraduate and graduate degree programs and certificates. Champlain's distinctive career-driven approach to higher education embodies the notion that true learning occurs when information and experience come together to create knowledge. Champlain College is included in the Princeton Review's The Best 384 Colleges: 2019 Edition. For the fourth year in a row, Champlain was named a "Most Innovative School" in the North by U.S. News & World Report's 2019 "America's Best Colleges,” and a “Best Value School” and is ranked in the top 100 “Regional Universities of the North” and in the top 25 for “Best Undergraduate Teaching.” Champlain is also featured in the Fiske Guide to Colleges for 2019 as one of the "best and most interesting schools" in the United States, Canada and Great Britain and is a 2019 College of Distinction. For more information, visit champlain.edu.