Raising the Funds You Need: Pablo Pino Visits Gables


Aaron Rojas

Thankful for Mr. Pino as a guest speaker, the Cavaleon huddled around Ms. Zuniga’s classroom for a group photo

As a token of appreciation to students, Coral Gables Senior High has invited many guest speakers to share their experiences within the financial realm. Stepping onto the index, International Baccalaureate math teacher Ms. Zuniga welcomed banker Pablo Pino into her classes. Mr. Pino had the opportunity to express his knowledge of finance hands-on.

Mr. Pino walked around the classroom and joined a group of students to hear their product concept. (Lauren Kaler)

Currently, Mr. Pino holds a top position as the Marketing President of TD Bank, in South Florida. He leads a group of banking experts to collaborate with local vendors and accomplish strategic objectives within the market. In addition, Mr. Pino oversees the financial needs of Miami-Dade County clients, all to repay them with interest.

“Since Mr. Pino came during our yearbook period, we had a more interactive sales pitch. It was both a learning opportunity and fun activity since we had to think quickly on our feet while exploring business concepts we weren’t familiar with,” senior Mariam Aguilar said.

Throughout Mr. Pino’s presentation on Jan. 19, about entrepreneurship and overseeing business investments, he advised students on how to form a solid business plan before seeking funds.

Members of Cavaleon publication brainstorm on their product and sales pitch to impress their guest speaker, Mr. Pino (Lauren Kaler)

For his opening activity, Mr. Pino emulated the popular TV show “Shark Tank” and instructed small groups to create a genuine product as well as a sales pitch. Each group’s task was to persuade Mr. Pino to invest $1 million in their potential firm within a 20 minute frame.

While Mr. Pino listened to the discussions, he wrote a Fair Issac Corporation score for the emerging products. Once the timer was up, every group presented their business offer. Ideas like a gas pump with different types of gasoline and a solar-powered water bottle captured the most attention.

“I enjoyed Mr. Pino’s presentation about his job and what he does precisely at TD Bank. My favorite part of his presentation was when we had to make a sales pitch within our groups to present to the class. The activity that he had for us was an interesting way to get creative with ideas that seem impossible now but, with a team and much thought-out plan on the business, the notion could be transformed into a multi-selling business,” junior Ashley Lemus said.

The team who won the $1 million investment was the idea of Robot Chicken hatching normal store-bought eggs. (Aaron Rojas)

Ultimately, the $1 million pitch came from Ms. Zuniga’s third period. The original idea devised a robot chicken that hatches store-bought eggs. Due to the recent surge in egg prices, Mr. Pino underlined how the invention would increase egg production rates. The product came with “egg powder packets” and once it was added in, it could hatch any type of egg.

“What I liked about Mr. Pino’s anecdotes was that he asked each group’s selling product different types of questions and FICO Scores that would have ultimately decided if he loans you the money of what was requested,” sophomore Lorenzo Quintana said.

Across the board, Mr. Pino’s visit to Gables as a guest speaker taught students the value of loaning money and the role of banks in society. In the upcoming year, Cavaliers await future opportunities in engaging with business leaders like Mr. Pino.