“There is nothing you can’t do. You can work everywhere”, said Miguel Gonçalves, leader of Spark Agency and hoster of the 14th edition of Pitch Bootcamp @ Técnico, which brought together 220 students, 170 professionals and 130 companies.
On 26th March, the second day of the event, a few minutes before the last pitches, Miguel Gonçalves challenged the participants to expand their comfort zone, manage anxiety and overcome introversion, and network while having fun. “I am sure that, as it happened to me, you will be amazed at the level of talent of these young people”, said the leader of Spark to the professionals – many of them Técnico alumni.
According to Filipe David, 4th year MSc student (Electrical and Computer Engineering), the pitch was his favourite moment. “The pitch with entrepreneurs and recruiters from other companies is really intense. They give us very personal advice. By far the highlight of this event, very intense”, he says.
Filipe David decided to participate in Pitch Bootcamp after he heard that it allowed students to “grow” and to “open their minds” to the business world. “I wanted to have my first pitching experience and receive more information on how to approach a company for a job”, he says.
“Now I feel much more confident! Engineers, recruiters and other people told us that we have talent and the ability to do what we want, which is something great. If they can do it, we can do it too”, shares the student.
Filipe David recalls one advice he got from the jury: “Enjoy life along with studies”. “It seems obvious, but when someone tells us that, we notice that in recent times we have devoted too much time to studies and that there are many other skills that are important”, he says. He also recalls “have confidence in yourself, don’t be afraid to send an e-mail to the company where you always wanted to work or to disagree in an interview”.
This confidence is one of the points that is most worked on the first day of the event. The bootcampers are encouraged to think about their value proposition, to identify the differentiating factors of their journey and how they can present themselves to the market. The first day of the event also includes the Lessons Learned. This year, the three guests speakers were André Cardoso (Executive Board Member Fidelidade Insurance Company and Técnico alumnus), Mário Vaz (CEO Vodafone Portugal) and Pedro Miranda (CEO Siemens Portugal).
“We learn a lot during these two days. This event opens many doors to the job market”, says Francisca Ferreira, 5th year student (Industrial Engineering and Management). This is the second time that the Técnico student attends the Pitch Bootcamp @ Técnico: “I wanted to gather more information about companies, understand what they are looking for and introduce myself. At the same time, I wanted to get feedback from different professionals to improve my pitch and to increase my network of contacts.
“This event helps us to open new horizons”, says Francisca Ferreira. “We meet a lot of people who are willing to help us. The networking moments are very important to understand what recruiters look for in students. It is also important for us to understand whether we see ourselves working at a company, that is, if the company values are in line with ours”, she adds.
“Pitch Bootcamp @ Técnico allows us to work on our skills in the right order, so that we can make a 2/3 min personal pitch to specific companies”, says Francisca Ferreira. “It also helps us to understand what we value in the job market. The feedback we get from professionals is crucial so that we can present our value proposition in the best way”, stresses the student.