The Hult Prize is the World’s largest student competition for social enterprise. The main objective of the Hult Prize is leveraging the crowd to generate startup ideas from young people to sustainably solve the world’s most critical social challenges.
Each year Hult Prize Foundation in collaboration with the United Nations, Clinton Global Initiative and EF Education First release a challenge on which students from more than 2000 colleges and universities would be creating a business model for-good, for-profit startups to solve on pressing social issues that are aligned with Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.
Interview with Hult Prize @ IOE, Pulchowk Campus Campus Director Mr Sujen Shrestha, a 2nd- year undergraduate at Pulchowk Campus.
Could you brief us through the impact of Hult Prize?
Dubbed as “Nobel Prize” of students, Hult Prize gives the creative group of people the means to change the world. Over the course of its 10-year journey, Hult Prize has wired more than one million young minds in reinventing entrepreneurship and empowered youth to think over the socially profitable business. This continues to harness disruptive innovations on colleges and campuses across the globe. The Hult Prize Foundation contributes a sum of Million USD in seed capital to Global winning team for their startup annually.
What is the competition format of the Hult Prize?
Each year, by mid-September, the Hult Prize Foundation releases the startup challenge for the upcoming year. The first and foremost round in any Hult Prize competition is an on-campus program which is the quarterfinal event for Hult Prize Global Finals. Students from respective colleges and universities would be competing for a spot in one of the regional finals in March/April of next year. Additionally, a wild card round gives a second chance for all the on-campus participants to qualify for the regionals.
The 25 regional rounds that happen around the globe would qualify one team towards an accelerator program where the students will be mentored and trained for a period of 6 weeks. Hult Prize Global Finals is the last round of the competition that would be hosted in the September of the upcoming year.
What is Hult Prize at IOE, Pulchowk Campus?
Hult Prize at IOE Pulchowk Campus, is the on-campus program for all technical (and Science) students of Tribhuvan University (Non-Science/ Non-Technical students of Tribhuvan University participate through Hult Prize at Tribhuvan University, SOMTU). It is one of the 7 On-Campus events organized throughout Nepal that would qualify one of the team for the regionals.
What things can we witness during the On-Campus Event of Hult Prize at IOE, Pulchowk Campus?
At the initial stage of the competition, we would be reaching out to students through our social media pages and various off-track events and competitions as part of engagement. We have opened applications for campus representatives to facilitate information sessions in participating institutions. The theme has been released and by early or mid-October we will be accepting applications for the On-Campus Finals through our website.
From the initial pool, a panel of mentors and judges will select a limited number of applicants by December first week. These teams will undergo a week-long mentorship program to improve their business models.
Finally, they will pitch their ideas amongst a panel of judges on December 14, 2019 who will then select the winning team which will be representing our university at the Regional Finals in March. We also had a National event early this year, where the best team from all On-Campus Event of Nepal had competed again to gain funding at the local level.
How will it impact Nepal and Nepali students?
The theme of this year is creating a business that will reach a million consumers within the next decade but also reducing gas emissions and has a positive impact on the environment. At present context, this theme is very relatable in Nepal and the whole world. With the present rates of environmental degradation, it is high time we think about our future.
As Aristotle says, “For the things we have to learn before we do them, we learn by doing them.” In this situation, the youth will be creating for-profit businesses that will solve the real problems of society. We are inspiring the youth who would be real heroes that impact positive changes in the environment and save millions of lives. I am very hopeful that we will be able to witness disruptive solutions to the pressing global environmental issues. “For the things we have to learn before we do them, we learn by doing them.”
What message do you want to convey through us?
At first, my sincere gratitude and thanks to Cyber Sanchar for providing this wonderful opportunity to present myself. I would like to reach out to all the organizations and businesses to join hands with us in leading a generation to change the world for good.