Hawk Pitch

Hawk Pitch

Innovative Ideas to Move CSM Forward

Do you have an idea that will make improvements to the College of Southern Maryland?  Whether you are a student or employee, we want to hear from you.


Competitiveness and relevancy are two words that describe the importance of innovation in any organization.  Continuous improvement requires the ongoing tracking of trends in the internal and external environment that can define our success.  To enable the vision of CSM to be the region’s first choice for accessible, inclusive, and innovative education that transforms communities we must continually examine, renew and adopt leading edge policies, practices and technologies.

Those closest to the work often understand it better than anyone else.  We need everyone at CSM invested in improving processes that advance our mission and drives student success.  Your opinion matters and providing you with an opportunity to share your ideas and to engage others in the institution who may have similar ideas is the first step.  We invite you to contribute and participate routinely and often in CSM’s innovation capture efforts.


HAWK PITCH is an annual event giving employees the opportunity to pitch their ideas.  All innovative ideas are welcome at anytime for the innovation team to review. This year at Hawk Pitch, we are focusing on how we can best retain students using HEERF funding. Ideas that cover costs associated with lost revenue, technology related to distance education, faculty and staff training, additional grants to students, student support activities that address needs related to coronavirus, implement evidence-based practices to monitor and suppress coronavirus, or conduct direct outreach to financial aid applicants regarding allowable FAFSA adjustments due to coronavirus are encouraged.

Join us!

September 24, 2021
CSM Velocity Center
9 - 11:30 a.m.
Hybrid (In-person and Virtual) 
RSVP for the Virtual Event

RSVPs for the in-person event are now closed. Note:  All pitches should be 3-5 minutes long. Pitches will be stopped after 5 minutes.

Join us for Hawk Pitch Prep!

These optional Zoom sessions will help you prepare for Hawk Pitch.


All participants should fill out and submit the I Have an Idea Worksheet by September 20. Please send completed worksheets for Hawk Pitch to Beverley Lahman: bglahman@csmd.edu


  • To help you pitch your idea, you can download this '90-second Pitch Outline Template.'
    • This Template provides you with a proven pitch outline and some example text for each of the six items in the outline.
    • To see what this pitch sounds like when presented live, you can click HERE to see an example video
  • Pro Tip: Don't wait until the last minute to write your pitch! Working on your pitch at the same time you're filling out your "I Have an Idea Worksheet" can help make both better.


Have Questions? Email Erin Ebersole at erebersole@csmd.edu 


About the College Innovation Work Group

We are a team of faculty and staff who have been meeting to develop ways we can create an ecosystem of innovation at CSM. 


The College Innovation Work Group ignites and grows innovation through education, research, and collaboration across the institution. ​​

  • Design a system of innovation capture and cultivation
  • Act as an innovation broker by providing employees and students with a process to pitch new ideas.
  • Improve inter-departmental collaboration on projects and new ideas

  • Encourage professional development about innovation and intrapreneurship​
  • Encourage a speaker’s series​
  • Research and stay current on innovative practices particularly in higher education​

  • Encourage employees and students to be innovative and have an intra/entrepreneurial mindset​
  • Reward and celebrate innovation​

Define innovation

Innovations can either be performed by individuals, groups or an entire organization.  

The types of innovations to be considered can be described as product, process or technical.  These innovations and can result in radical or incremental change.  (Damanpour, 1991) (Damanpour & Aravind, 2012) (Sciulli, 1998).  

Radical innovations result in major deviations from current practices replacing them with processes, products or technical changes that are entirely new.  Incremental innovations have minor deviations from current practices resulting in a series of small-scale improvements made to an existing product or service to add or sustain value.

  • Product innovations are often technology driven based upon demand or new advancements.
  • Process innovations are those improvements made to how a product or service is produced, i.e. efficiency.  
  • Technical innovations can involve both product and processes as its adaptation can improve upon an organization’s work.

Let’s innovate!

Submit an idea

Both students and employees can submit their ideas at any time by filling out the I Have an Idea Worksheet.  This worksheet will take you through the idea-development process.  Once completed, click here to submit and someone from the College Innovation Workgroup will get back to you.

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