The inaugural CCA Sparks cohort.

California College of the Arts to host inaugural CCA Sparks Pitch Day competition

The competition will be streamed live and for free on April 17

Five student-run teams will pitch new and innovative business ideas on Friday, April 17, at California College of the Arts’ inaugural CCA Sparks Pitch Day event.

The virtual event serves as the culmination of CCA Sparks—a rigorous six-week co-curricular program designed to educate student-run teams and help them refine their ideas and develop new products while preparing them to one day launch companies. The five teams will compete for up to $5,000 in cash prizes.

The teams represent a wide range of art and design disciplines, including architecture, illustration, and interaction design. They include:

  • Scope: Shervin Nakhjavani, Debanjana Saha, Shivani Singh (MDes Interaction Design 2020)
  • Trash Party: Donna Mena (MAAD Advanced Architectural Design 2020)
  • TMBR: Blake Terry, Larika Mallier, Maxime Stinnett (MDes Interaction Design 2020)
  • Anti- Matter: Lori Martinez (BArch Architecture 2020)
  • Funky Fresh: Zara Avoyan (BFA Illustration 2020)

Venture capitalist Arjo Mozumder, a board member at Intersection for the Arts, Holly Samuelsen (BFA Textiles 2008), co-owner of San Francisco-based shop and design company Gravel & Gold, and Norman Shih, a biotech industry professional who also sits on the board of Intersection for the Arts, will serve as judges for the event. The audience will vote for a “People’s Choice” Award winner.

Launched in spring 2020, CCA Sparks provides student teams with individualized coaching and mentorship by Intersection for the Arts, a CCA partner and leading Bay Area nonprofit organization. CCA Sparks accepted 17 student-run teams into its inaugural cohort this year.

The competition is set for 4 pm PST on Friday, April 17. The event is free and the public is encouraged to attend the viewing; advance registration is preferred.

About CCA Sparks

CCA Sparks is a business pitch competition and co-curricular program for undergraduate and graduate students at California College of the Arts that launched in spring of 2020, designed to support students’ learning about the creation of new business plans to foster a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship at CCA. CCA Sparks is presented by California College of the Arts' Career Development Office, in partnership with Intersection for the Arts.


Lindsay Wright

Director of Integrated Communications

+1 530-906-8805

[email protected]