Babson Student Team 1 Step Closer To Winning $1M Hult Prize & Solving Presidential Challenge
The Hult Prize Foundation recently announced that Babson College, D.E.F.I (Defining Education Foundations Innovatively) has advanced to the regional finals of the sixth annual Hult Prize. The annual Hult Prize Challenge is the world’s largest student competition and start-up platform for social good. In partnership with President Bill Clinton and the Clinton Global Initiative, the innovative crowdsourcing platform identifies and launches disruptive and catalytic social ventures that aim to solve the planet’s most pressing challenges. Student teams compete in five cities around the world for a chance to secure USD1 million in start-up funding to launch a sustainable social venture.
Each member of Babson’s DEFI has strengths that will make the team successful. Prabha Dublish (Sammamish, Washington) founded a community service organization called Charity Circle that brings teens to community service activities. Daniel Coley (Greensboro, North Carolina) brings a unique perspective from being a former hockey player, having taken two gap years traveling the United States, and as an aspiring entrepreneur. Nijanth Velmanikandan (Cerritos, California) is a freelance filmmaker who has worked on numerous professional projects and is an Eagle Scout. Michael Horbowy (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) brings innovative thinking from his experience captaining a solar car team in high school, where he championed the development of a solar car that has competed throughout the United States. Jamie Traverso (North Caldwell, New Jersey) brings a different perspective as she is extremely passionate about marketing and big data. “The team may be young, but we are incredibly bright, diverse, and hungry for success,” said Daniel Coley. “
The 2015 Hult Prize will focus on building start-ups that provide sustainable, high quality early education solutions to ten million children under the age of six in urban slums and beyond by the year 2020. This year’s challenge was selected and set by President Bill Clinton, who said, “The Hult Prize is about more than the solution to the problem, it’s about how the world has to work in the 21st century.”
Ahmad Ashkar, CEO and Founder of the Hult Prize Foundation, attributes the rapid growth of the SRI sector to new demand being created by the international market place. “Servicing the world’s poorest through profitable and sustainable enterprise is not just good for the world, its great business.” “Our pioneering platform builds ecosystems by leveraging crowd and we couldn’t be happier that Babson College will be joining our mission with their participation in the 6th annual Hult Prize.”
The Hult Prize gives entrepreneurs from around the world a platform to innovate and revolutionize the way society thinks about servicing the poor. Each team selected was chosen from more than 20,000 applications received from over 500 colleges and universities in over 150 countries. The Hult Prize regional final competitions will take place on March 13 and 14, 2015 in Boston, San Francisco, London, Dubai and Shanghai. Babson College, D.E.F.I will compete in the Boston regional final.
Following the regional finals, one winning team from each host city will move into a summer business incubator, where participants will receive mentorship, advisory and strategic planning as they create prototypes and set-up to launch and scale their new ventures. A final round of competition will be hosted by President Bill Clinton and the Clinton Global Initiative at its annual meeting in September, where CGI delegates will select a winning team, which will be awarded the USD1 million Prize by President Bill Clinton himself. President Clinton has gone on to say, “The Hult Prize is a wonderful example of the creative cooperation needed to build a world with shared opportunity, shared responsibility, and shared prosperity, and each year I look forward to seeing the many outstanding ideas the competition produces.”
About the Hult Prize Foundation
The Hult Prize Foundation is a pioneer in crowd-based approaches to the development of entrepreneurial ecosystems and the acceleration of social enterprise. Its start-up accelerator brings together the brightest college and university students from around the globe to solve the world’s most pressing issues. It has been named by TIME amongst the top five ideas changing the world. The annual Hult Prize Challenge is the world’s largest student competition and crowd-sourcing platform for social good. The Hult Prize Foundation has been funded by the Hult family since it was founded in 2009 by current CEO, Ahmad Ashkar. To learn more, visit www.hultprize.org.
About The Clinton Global Initiative Established in 2005 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), an initiative of Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation, convenes global leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. CGI Annual Meetings have brought together more than 150 heads of state, 20 Nobel Prize laureates, and hundreds of leading CEOs, heads of foundations and NGOs, major philanthropists, and members of the media. To date, CGI members have made more than 2,500 commitments, which are already improving the lives of more than 430 million people in over 180 countries. When fully funded and implemented, these commitments will be valued at $87.9 billion.
Babson College is the educator, convener, and thought leader for Entrepreneurship of All Kinds™. The College is a dynamic living and learning laboratory, where students, faculty, and staff work together to address the real-world problems of business and society—while at the same time evolving our methods and advancing our programs. We shape the leaders our world needs most: those with strong functional knowledge and the skills and vision to navigate change, accommodate ambiguity, surmount complexity, and motivate teams in a common purpose to create economic and social value. As we have for nearly a half-century, Babson continues to advance Entrepreneurial Thought and Action® as the most positive force on the planet for generating sustainable economic and social value.
An independent, not-for-profit institution, Babson is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, and the European Quality Improvement System (EQUIS). In the 2014–2015 academic year, more than 2,100 undergraduate and 900 graduate students are attending Babson, representing more than 80 countries.