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FAQs

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Q. WHAT DOES THE FORUM OFFER ME?

Enterprise Forum Pittsburgh is one of the region’s best opportunities for gaining the business insights and connections that are useful to entrepreneurs. Here are five ways you can benefit:

  • Come to a program and experience the mix of knowledge and candor that mark these events.
  • Become a presenter and gain the insight you need to take your business to the next level.
  • Appear an expert panelist, and move to stage center in the entrepreneurial community.
  • Sponsor the Forum, and gain direct access to the entrepreneurs, investors, and experts who attend our events.
  • Volunteer on a committee or program, and work side-by-side with active, seasoned members of the entrepreneurial community.

Q. IS THERE A MEMBERSHIP FEE?

No, simply pay for the events that you attend. We cover a wide variety of companies and topics of interest to entrepreneurs, and we recognize that in the entrepreneurial community, personal schedules often change. We want you to be free to attend events that interest you as your schedule allows, without being locked in to a membership commitment. We welcome you to attend one event, or the entire season.


Q. WHAT DO EVENTS COST?

Most events are $30, with a discount available for pre-registration. Students may attend most events for $10. A few special events may be slightly more.


Q. WHY SHOULD I JOIN THE MAILING LIST?

You’ll be among the first to receive our email bulletin with Forum programs and events, as well as Forum mailings.


Q. HOW CAN I BE A PRESENTER?

You may apply to become a presenter at a Case Forum, or you may want to make a short presentation at an Open Forum. Case Forum presenters should be leaders at entrepreneurial companies in the region, or established companies involved in entrepreneurial activities. We’re looking for clear, concise presentations of the business plan of your company, or strategic plans to address market issues. Your case should reflect issues shared by the entrepreneurial community. Open Forum presenters make very short presentations at regular events such as the Hiring Squad or the Elevator Pitch. Contact the Forum for more information.


Q. HOW CAN I BE A PANELIST?

Panelists at Case Forums and Open Forums are recognized experts in the regional entrepreneurial community, with experience starting or operating a business. Panelists should combine insight with the ability to articulate it in a frank but empathic way. Panels generally include four panelists. Contact the Forum for more information.


Q. WHAT KINDS OF PROGRAMS DO YOU PRODUCE?

We generally produce 10 to 12 programs a year. They include three types:

  • Case Forums
  • Issue Forums
  • Open Forums

Q. WHAT IS A CASE FORUM?

Case Forums are the Enterprise Forum’s signature event. Each Case Forum challenges an entrepreneur to present his or her real business case to a panel of business veterans, and answer probing questions. Consider it a flight simulator for business ideas.


Q. WHAT IS AN ISSUE FORUM?

Issue Forums convene local and national panels to debate an urgent issue facing many entrepreneurs. Panel members bring recent, direct experience to the table, and share candid views that often spark new insights. If you want to stay relevant, this is how.


Q. WHAT IS AN OPEN FORUM?

Open Forums give you the opportunity to test your own pitch against a panel of experts, or to watch and learn as others try. What does it take to present yourself or your business to seasoned professionals in 90 seconds? Here’s the best way to find out.


Q. WHAT IS A GLOBAL BROADCAST?

Some Issue Forums are global broadcasts. These events are broadcast live by satellite to the local MIT Enterprise Forum chapters, who can participate interactively during the Q&A segment of the program. The MIT Enterprise Forum headquarters in Cambridge puts on three events per year where a nationally renowned speaker or panel takes on a topic or issue of significance for entrepreneurs. These events are broadcast live by satellite to the local MIT Enterprise Forum chapters who participate interactively during the Q&A segment of the program.


Q. WHAT VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES ARE AVAILABLE?

As a volunteer, you may join a committee supporting programming, marketing, sponsorship, or other essential functions. You may help produce a Forum event, or participate in outreach activities. Volunteers attend events at no cost.


Q. I HAVE ONLY A LIMITED AMOUNT OF TIME. HOW CAN I CONTRIBUTE?

Spot an emerging issue or industry that you think we should address in an upcoming program and let us know. If you are aware of a company who would like to sponsor us, we’d love to hear from you.


Q. WHAT SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES ARE AVAILABLE?

The MIT Enterprise Forum has three types of sponsors – Sustaining Sponsors, Corporate Sponsors, and Event Sponsors. We are a qualified 501 (c) (3) organization. All our sponsors receive recognition on invitations, program guides and the website as well as the gratitude of the region’s entrepreneurial community.


Q. WHAT IS A SUSTAINING SPONSOR?

Sustaining Sponsors make an annual grant of $10,000. They receive a high level of recognition throughout the season, and become partners with the Forum in developing the Forum’s events and strategic plans.


Q. WHAT IS A CORPORATE SPONSOR?

Corporate Sponsors make an annual grant of $5,000 and receive a high level of recognition throughout the program season.


Q. WHAT IS AN EVENT SPONSOR?

Event Sponsors make a grant of $2,500 to support a specific event, participate in event planning, and receive recognition through the event and its publicity. There may be up to two sponsors for each event.


Q. HOW DO I GET INVOLVED?

Email us at mitefp.programdirector@gmail.com or call us at 412-310-9198. Tell us your interests and we’ll contact you.

THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS

Our sponsors allow us to continue creating impactful programs that help Pittsburgh’s entrepreneurs. To find out more, email us at jill@berardigroup.com.

ENTERPRISE LEVEL

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GROWTH LEVEL

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START UP LEVEL

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MISSION

The MIT Enterprise Forum’s mission is to inform, connect, and coach entrepreneurs—enabling them to rapidly transform ideas into world-changing companies. We are a network of local organizations, and open to the world.

VISION

Our vision is to build a better world by accelerating the creation and growth of world-class companies right here in Pittsburgh.