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Upskill Ancona: a new paradigm for school and business

Let's start with coffee. Yes, because Antonio Tombolini, in giving feedback to the presentation regarding his The Smoking Tiger, a company that operates in the specialty coffee and coffee equipment trade, summed up in a few minutes the work that the Upskill 4.0 projects carry out, talking about a new paradigm of interpreting the business-school relationship, where students are finally called upon to immerse themselves in the complex dynamics of each individual company and bring their vision. 

The companies he mentions are the seven that participated in the project Upskill Ancona, all of them different from each other, but as Gaia Segattini said, all of them finally intent on pursuing a certain idea of doing business, one that gives a lot of importance, and priority, to the dissemination of added value as opposed to just selling.

And from the meeting with students, true healthy carriers of digital culture as Stefano Micelli says, possible trajectories of innovation come into focus that create a generative dynamic that is good for businesses, and for those who work in them. Let us add that it is the same territory that benefits from this ability to network. 

An example of this meeting is S.A.M. Where Hub, where the acronym S.A.M. stands for Sustainability Craft Marche and is accompanied by the pay-off Connect. Create. Innova., a new multifunctional creative space conceived by the students of theITS Tourism Marche, a solution to the challenge launched by Gaia Segattini Knotwear to imagine a space based on the values of sustainability.

The challenge launched instead by Grilli Food Factory was to create a branding strategy for Ninì baby food. And this was a challenge within a challenge for the students of theITS Tourism Marche because they had to map out a positioning strategy for a product that has not yet been launched in the market and is still in the testing phase. With project manager Sofia Ressia the students studied the context, analyzed the online communities of new parents, who are increasingly attentive to children's nutrition, and realized that trust also comes through appealing packaging. They created a new branding strategy for Ninì baby food, consisting of a mascot, a landing page dedicated to the new product, and a traveling outdoor launch event. For Roberto Grilli seeing the presentation was very exciting. "It was not obvious to follow our directions. I return 'back to the store' with a greater awareness of how to grow this project, which for me is a dream that with you takes more substance."

The challenge launched by Wells and Puddles. was instead to create a digital platform for library management that was also a tool for opening up to the community. The key words that guided the students of theITS Business Services of Rome to the solution were intuitiveness, simple management, information and community. With the support of Elena Masi they created software to manage the digital library, PozzangheRoom a colorful multifunctional space to facilitate book searching and reading, and a small fundraising event called "Evolving Reading." "For us, the challenge given was important because it was a real need of the children. The project exceeded our expectations," said the Pits and Puddles teachers. "This tool is very appealing, especially to those who are not that interested in reading. Beauty wants its share, even with children. With them we try to create a real community, this will be a useful tool to continue to cultivate it."

For IN.CO.M the students of theITS Business Services instead devised a communication strategy very consistent with the three aspects that most characterize the company: implementation 4.0, Lean strategy and great ability to customize, where the human and technological components are the real competitive value of the company. "I can only congratulate these guys, they are really competent, it's not taken for granted," said Matteo Campolucci. "Finding this kind of efficiency and effectiveness, it's not easy. Our problem was just communicating what we do: thanks to the project, we will make progress."

The project Flavors of the Sea...that! for Rinci consists of a new product packaging design designed to give greater visibility to the brand and artists in the area, an online cookbook and related social format, and an itinerary to promote producers and restaurateurs within Conero Park. Students from theITS Agrifood of Rome with project manager Michele Tagliavini also imagined a new stand for Rinci, not too expensive and interactive that would allow in a simple way for everyone during a food and wine fair to understand the uniqueness of this product. Positive response from Claudia Gonnelli of Rinci "Better than this I could not ask for, they were very good and receptive, also because we have very practical ideas. I have to tell the truth that some of the ideas have already been a great stimulus and I have already put them into practice!"

For The Smoking Tiger students from theITS Agrifood of Rome came up with "Antonio's Journey," a travelogue across five continents to discover countries and highlight communities that grow different types of coffee, a series of events and new Eco-Gadgets. "Coffee is a product that everyone thinks they know, but no one really knows, from the supply chain to the taste, it is a huge market, second only to oil. With the students the attunement was immediate, they expected no less, there were already very good premises! The challenge was already won, now it's up to us to implement what they proposed. For me this was a very good experience!" said Antonio Tombolini.

For Velvet for Philosophers the goal of the project was to demonstrate how a vintage garment has its own contemporaneity, positioning the Velvet brand as a promoter of vintage culture, with a strategy that touches online and offline. After analyzing the so-called "economy of nostalgia," students from the'ITS Tourism Marche came up with five solutions: 80s-themed in-store weekends, a landing page dedicated to iconic vintage garments and their cultural role, social video columns, a challenge for fashion school students and an event called "Future Nostalgia Vintage Festival." An "experiential" way to experience vintage culture. For Andrea Maffei of Velvet for Philosophers "the proposal is very current and very fascinating, it hits the mark: it develops new languages and gives body to a reflection that revolves around new syntaxes. For me, they hit the challenge right on the mark!"