Judging Criteria


The President’s Creative Challenge for Sustainability includes two rounds of judging. The first round consists of proposal evaluation. The second round includes proposal evaluation and an elevator pitch competition. Read below for judging criteria details and be sure to check out the President’s Creative Challenge for Sustainability Dates & Deadlines for updates in the FALL, 2011.

FIRST ROUND JUDGING: Proposal Evaluation
For the first round of judging, an expert panel of community members and Sheridan College affiliates will evaluate proposals. There are four judging criteria: sustainability, creativity, impact and implementation (see Judging Rubric).

To earn high marks in the Sustainability category, be sure you show clear alignment with the sustainability principles.  You should spend 1 hour taking the FREE 1 hour Sustainability 101 online course. To receive your free username and password click here.

To earn high marks in the Creativity category, demonstrate a compelling need for your innovative project idea by connecting it to one of the Sheridan Focus Areas and developing an innovative approach to solving a sustainability challenge.  Please connect with the Office for Sustainability if you have project ideas that do not appear on this list.

To earn high marks in the Impact category, be sure to explain the expected impact for your idea and the metrics for how you will evaluate your success.

To earn high marks in the Implementation category, demonstrate that you can successfully implement your idea by providing a feasible timeline, explanation of who is working on the project (team members and/or mentors) and an appropriate budget.

SECOND ROUND JUDGING: Proposal Evaluation/Elevator Pitches
Based on marks from first round judging, a group of finalists will be selected to move on to the second round of judging. For the second round, a panel of government, business and social innovation and entrepreneurship experts will evaluate elevator pitches. The four judging criteria will again include sustainability, creativity, impact and implementation (see notes above).

The Pitch Process
Please check the dates and deadlines page for the elevator pitch portion of the competition.
Each team will be given 5 minutes to deliver a pitch before the second round judges’ panel. These judges will have had access to teams’ executive summaries in advance. Pitches should be concise, interesting, and outline the sustainability and creativity of the idea, its impact and the team’s plans for implementation.

Each team’s five minutes before the judging panel is inclusive of time for questions and answers. We recommend that teams pitch for three minutes and leave two minutes for questions and answers, but teams may divide their five minutes however they see fit.

Sample Pitch

In this exemplary 3 minute pitch the presenter successfully tells a story about her nonprofit organization, Girls and Gangs, and also conveys how her program addresses a need to support young women in the juvenile justice system. She uses her remaining 2 minutes to allow for comments and questions from the judges.

Pitch Rules and Tips
Although only one person presents in the sample pitch (above), you can involve as many members of your team as you wish in the pitch. We have found in the past that some teams only have the team leader speak, while other teams ensure that each team member has a role in presenting. We leave this up to your discretion. Play to your team’s strengths; for example, if you have a team member who is an excellent presenter, he/she could deliver the majority of the pitch.

Teams will not have access to a projector or the internet during their presentations. Teams may use other visual aids, but they are discouraged, as they may be a distraction from the pitch, versus an enhancement (e.g., handouts, etc.).

Use this tip sheet to create a strong elevator pitch.