CUHK (Shenzhen) Undergraduates Qualify for the Hult Prize Global Final
Hongran Capital Sponsors University Innovation & Entrepreneurship Competition
The Hult Prize Impact Summit 2021-Shenzhen and the Donation Ceremony of Hongran Capital were held on April 23 at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (Shenzhen). After a fierce competition, the ReKOPI team from the Chinese University of Hong Kong (Shenzhen) qualified for the Hult Prize Global Final, and will participate in the entrepreneurial incubation program this summer and compete in the final against teams from Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Yale University, and other universities at the United Nations in New York, competing for the social enterprise creative practice award up to 1 million US dollars. On the same day, the Donation Ceremony of Hongran Capital was held in the administrative building of our university. The donation is mainly used to support the organization of innovation and entrepreneurship competitions for college students at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (Shenzhen).
Professor Gu Yang, Associate Vice President of CUHK (Shenzhen), Professor Zhu Baoting, Associate Vice President of CUHK (Shenzhen), Professor Michael Ferguson, representative & Senior Associate Dean of the School of Management & Economics (SME), Professor Zhang Dapeng of the School of Data Science, Professor Liang Yongbo of the School of Science & Engineering, Ms. Ye Xiaoni, Deputy Director of Career Planning & Development Department, Professor Sun Zhenglong, representative of Muse College, Ms. Zhu Liping, representative of Diligentia College, and Ms. Lin Yanjuan, representative of Shaw College attended the summit. The guests invited to attend this regional summit include Mr. Li Xiaoguang, Partner of Hongran Capital, Mr. Zhang Yilong, Mr. Zhang Xiaoqing, Mr. Xie Yuntao, Deputy Director of the Development & Reform Bureau of Longgang District, Ms. Huang Ying, Deputy Director of the Investment Promotion Agency of Longgang District, and Mr. Chen Qimin, Deputy Director of the Science &Technology Innovation Bureau of Longgang District, and Mr. Chen Qiaohua, Deputy General Manager of the Shenzhen Branch of China Construction Bank. Many outstanding entrepreneurs and industry leaders from all over the country also attended the event with students to discuss creative proposals and promote entrepreneurial development.
Group photo of guests & representatives of participating teams
Group photo of guests & representatives of participating teams
As one of the world's largest student innovation & entrepreneurship competitions, this summit requires participating teams to exchange ideas and creativity around the theme of "Food for Good, a sustainable entrepreneurship initiative in the food system", and aims to lead advanced business models with careful and open thinking to solve urgent social problems. The finals were simultaneously broadcast live on Tencent Live, and over 940,000 people watched the grand finals online.
The Chinese University of Hong Kong (Shenzhen) sent three teams to participate in this Hult Impact Summit – ReKOPI, Armada, and Healthappy. Among them, the ReKOPI team defeated 26 teams from 16 universities including Tsinghua University, Beijing Foreign Studies University (BFSU), Varendra University, Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU), University of International Business & Economics (UIBE).
The ReKOPI team is composed of international students from the School of Management & Economics (SME) and the School of Science & Engineering. They are Tiffany Osmond (Class of 2018, SME, Shaw College), Justian Frederick (Class of 2018, SME, Diligentia College), So Ry Park (Class of 2018, SME, Harmonia College), and Justina Sulystio (Class of 2017, School of Science & Engineering, Muse College). The ReKOPI team’s project is mainly dedicated to creating sustainable consumption & production while reducing the health hazards of pollution. The project is about reducing hazardous waste in coffee grounds & turning them into coffee pellets, promoting a sustainable & environment-friendly alternative fuel for charcoal & firewood.
The Hult Prize is jointly promoted by the United Nations and the Hult International Business School. It is called the "Nobel Prize for Students" by the international media. It has also been included in the cover story of Time Magazine as "5 ideas that are changing the world (for the better)". It aims to lead a new generation to change the world through sustainable business models. With its million-dollar ultimate prize, the Hult Prize Foundation is committed to helping young people become leaders in driving global change. It has provided a lot of support & training to over 2.1 million students around the world to cultivate their leadership and innovative thinking.
The summit has two parts: the preliminary and the final. Of the 27 teams in the preliminary, only 6 teams can make it to the final - Armada and ReKOPI from CUHK (Shenzhen), TaChu from Varendra University in Bangladesh, Coco Fruit from Tsinghua University, Green Savior from XJTLU, and Ikigai from UIBE. After careful & heated discussion by the judges, The ReKOPI team from CUHK (Shenzhen) won the laurel wreath & the funding of 36,000 yuan for project implementation. The six teams that made it to the final will all receive a startup office in Shenzhen provided by the Center for Innovation, Design & Entrepreneurship (CIDE) to encourage these outstanding teams to continue to implement their social innovation plans with viable business models.
The 12 judges for the final come from academia and industry, and the lineup was unprecedentedly strong. The team of mentors helps the entrepreneurial team improve their projects. CIDE prepared a series of training & coaching activities such as workshops, mentor guidance, conversations on topical issues, etc. before the competition, providing comprehensive & targeted training for the teams to solve the technical, market & future development issues of the projects. Finally, a complete format for this competition was developed.
Team of Judges
Team of Mentors
Professor Gu Yang, Associate Vice President, expressed her gratitude in her speech to the event organizers, mentors, judges, & donors, and thanked everyone for making their contributions to entrepreneurship & innovation, supporting and cultivating a new generation of innovative talents. Professor Gu said, “The Chinese University of Hong Kong (Shenzhen) has always attached great importance to cultivating talents with international forward-looking vision and knowledge. Therefore, this summit is a good opportunity to exchange ideas from all over the world and get inspiration. I hope CIDE can have more innovative activities so that more young people with dreams have the opportunity to chase their dreams."
Professor Gu Yang delivers a speech.
Professor Gu Yang delivers a speech.
Later, Ahmad Ashkar, the founder and CEO of the Hult Prize Foundation, praised and congratulated all the teams that made it to the final on behalf of the organizer of the Shenzhen regional final of the Hult Prize. He congratulated all the students putting forward creative ideas to change society through their hard work. "Every year, millions of young people from universities around the world gather at the Hult Prize where they think and try boldly and work hard to solve some of the huge challenges facing mankind. We work together to create a better world for everyone through ideas that solve social problems and establishing stronger and longer-lasting connections."
Ahmad Ashkar delivers a speech.
Professor Michael Ferguson, Senior Associate Dean of the School of Management & Economics, Belen Marin of the Hult Prize Foundation, and Sharon Fu of Hult Prize China, warmly welcomed innovative teams from all over the world in their speeches and thanked all the staff from both sides for their support for and dedication to this event.
As the sole organizer of the 2021 Hult Prize Impact Summit in mainland China, the CIDE of CUHK (Shenzhen) and the Hult Prize Foundation have co-organized the "2018 Greater Bay Area Hult Prize Challenge", "2018 Hult Prize Campus Challenge", "2019 Greater Bay Area Hult Prize Challenge", "2019 Hult Prize Campus Challenge", "2020 Hult Prize Campus Challenge" and "2021 Hult Prize Impact Summit" since 2018. The event has been motivating young students in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area who have dreams of innovation & entrepreneurship and inspiring participants to create profitable business models that are for a good cause so that they can contribute to the construction and development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area and the world.
The CIDE of CUHK (Shenzhen) will remain true to its original aspirations and forge forward. It will host more international innovation activities & competitions to allow more people to participate and fully engage in the building of an innovative environment in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area.
Besides, the donation ceremony of Hongran Capital was also held at the final. The sponsorship of one million yuan is to be used to support the organization of the innovation & entrepreneurship competitions for college students at the CUHK (Shenzhen). Professor Gu Yang, Associate Vice President of the university expressed her heartfelt gratitude to Hongran Capital for its sponsorship on behalf of the university. Mr. Li Xiaoguang, the Partner of Hongran Capital, pointed out that CUHK (Shenzhen) attaches great importance to the training of college students’ innovative & entrepreneurial capabilities. Hongran Capital’s sponsorship for innovation and entrepreneurship activities for college students will help those events to be conducted more smoothly and will give a bigger platform of innovation and entrepreneurship to the students of CUHK (Shenzhen).