Pia is of Portuguese and Italian decent and was born and predominantly educated in Cape Town. In 2008 she was one of four South African students to receive a prestigious United World Colleges scholarship to finish her secondary schooling abroad. She completed her International Baccalaureate at Lester B. Pearson United World College of the Pacific in Vancouver, Canada in 2010.
Pia returned home to complete her LLB at the University of Cape Town, during which she also worked part-time and volunteered at a social justice and advocacy NGO. Pia also mentored and tutored both pupils and law students throughout her LLB.
In 2015 Pia commenced her LLM in Environmental Law and partook in a semester-exchange programme at the University of Maryland in the USA. Pia has research experience in matters relating to land-use planning, natural resources and environmental authorisations.