George Brown College students won a combined $10,000 in seed money for their entrepreneurial ideas as part of the annual Pitch It! competition hosted by startGBC.
The 2021 competition—held online due to COVID-19—awarded ideas in two streams: business (for-profit) and social innovation. A subscription service that showcases Toronto merchants won in the business category and a tutoring management system took the social innovation prize. Winners in both categories received $2,500 in start-up money.
Katherine Feldman’s local subscription service Box of 6ix took top spot in the business category. The service provides a tour of Toronto of sorts. Subscribers receive a box containing a variety of products that are sourced from a different Toronto neighbourhood each month.
“This Pitch It! competition has been an opportunity for me to grow as a person, an entrepreneur, and for Box Of 6ix to grow as a business,” said Feldman, a student at the School of Design.
And a trio of students from the School of Computer Technology won in the social innovation category with SARa, a tutoring management system aimed at helping organizations streamline their efforts. Alec Pagliarussi, Rafael Afonso Silva and Suho Kang all work as tutors at George Brown.
Here is the full list of winners:
Business (for-profit) category
2nd place ($1,500)
Chimney and Tea
School of Hospitality and Tourism Management student Jung Jung Hu
A company that sells direct-sourced Asian high-mountain oolong tea to help alleviate home sickness for members of the Asian community.
3rd place ($1,000)
Business student Jumana Dar
A service to provide healthy, personalized meals to older adults.
Social innovation category
1st place ($2,500)
School of Computer Technology students Alec Pagliarussi, Rafael Afonso Silva and Suho Kang
A tutoring management system that will streamline various tutoring projects for organizations.
2nd place ($1,500)
Black Women United
School of Social and Community Services students Vanesha Allen-London, Tsion Gutu and Juline Sutton
A safe space that educates and empowers Black women through strengths-based workshops, fostering mental health and developing a positive sense of self.