Currently viewing the tag: "Business competitions"
This will be an exciting day for four teams of Fletcher students who are competing in the Tufts $100K New Ventures Competition. Four teams out of only 18 to reach the finals, in fact! The finalist teams will compete in three tracks — Social Impact; MedTech and Life Science; and General and High-Tech — with the pitching going on throughout the day. The competing teams all include, but aren’t limited to, members of the Tufts community.
The Fletcher teams are:
Edkasa, Winner of the 2018 Fletcher D-Prize with $30,000 in cash and in-kind support services!
Team Members: Sohail Ali, F19; Bakhtawar Ali, F19; Fahad Tanveer; Annum Sadiq
Venture description: Pakistan has 15 million out of school secondary students. Of those who are in school, nearly half do not graduate. Using a live, virtual learning platform, EDKASA makes “rock star” teachers accessible to secondary students in Pakistan at an affordable cost.
Team Members: Faith Biegon, F18; Collins Sirmah, A16; Bryson Wong, A17
Venture description: Dukas, “Mom and Pop stores,” play a critical role in Kenya’s economy. They supply roughly 70 percent of the country’s consumer goods and are often run by women or families. These shop owners lack information on prices, travel long distances to wholesalers, and incur high transportation costs. We are building an online system where shopkeepers can view prices and make orders. We then aggregate orders from multiple shopkeepers and rely on third-party transporters to deliver goods utilizing economies of scale. Shop keepers now know prices, get goods at their doorsteps, and save on transportation costs.
Team Members: Jean Damascene Ndabirora, F18; Utsav Malay, F18; Subrahmanyam Pulipaka
Venture description: Sun GLOW provides practical online and offline training and classes for solar company personnel, vocational students, and university students. These classes and the curriculum are custom designed for the Rwandan context. Many companies win solar contracts without the correct expertise; this results in improper, inefficient design and faulty construction. SunGLOW provides the right training, understanding of design, as well as knowledge about climate financing the companies/students can access in Rwanda and internationally to launch their products/systems/ideas. We ensure capacity building in one of the fastest growing sectors in East Africa, renewable energy.
Team Members: Zerin Osho, F18; Aditya Kaushik, F17; Keerthana Chandrashekhar, F16; Sookrit Malik, A17 F18
Venture description: Energeia will enable an affordable clean energy transition which will retrofit India’s inefficient transmission system and diesel generator powered infrastructure into a reliable smart microgrid powered by renewable energy and natural gas. The company will upgrade the existing diesel generators into natural gas hybrids which are controlled and managed by an industrial IoT platform. This platform will integrate intermittent sources of renewable energy, map consumption to highlight energy efficiency opportunities, and allow for a smooth integration into emission-trading systems in the future.
The winners will be named tomorrow (Thursday), though the “People’s Choice” winner will be selected today.
If you’d like to know more about Edkasa (the Fletcher D-Prize winner and one of today’s competitors), check out this conversation between Dean Bhaskar Chakravorti and Sohail Ali and Bakhtawar Ali.
Great news for our students: Fletcher’s team in the CFA Institute Research Challenge emerged as champions in last night’s Boston-region competition! Presenting their research on the company Boston Scientific, the Fletcher team topped competitors Babson College, Brandeis University, and Hult International in the final round.
The winning team consisted of JP Craven (first-year MIB), Doris Hernandez (second-year MALD), Ashray Dixit (second-year MIB), and our own Admissions Bloggers Mariya and Adi! Professor Patrick Schena was advisor to the team and Office of Career Services Director Elana Givens added her input and attended the competition, as did Dean Bhaskar Chakravorti.
The next round of the challenge will be the North and South Americas regional competition (coincidentally) in Boston on March, with about 50 teams competing. The winner of the regional competition will go to the global competition in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in April.
Congratulations to Professor Schena and the successful team!
This has been an exciting week for Fletcher entrepreneurs and competitors. Participation in business competitions, both in our local area and beyond, has been an increasingly common aspect of the graduate school experience for many Fletcher students, and 2017 brought some noteworthy successes. Here’s a run-down of the wins that students have achieved after a year of preparation for end-of-year competitions.
First, in Tufts University’s own $100K New Ventures Competition, Peter Sacco, F17 has taken first place in the $50K Social Impact track for Adelante Shoes, winning $16K in cash and the remainder coming from in-kind services. Adelante is also a 2016 Ideas Competition winner. Peter has pioneered a new Living Well social impact model right here at Fletcher.
Even more locally, Meghan Li, F18, is the 2017 Fletcher D-Prize winner for her fintech nonprofit ComeonGirls, and she has won $10K plus in-kind mentoring and support worth up to $20K to spend the summer “interning” with her start up. She will be piloting her scholarship platform on WeChat, matching donors in China with deserving girls in rural Western China.
And, shifting back to the Tufts $100K, Daphne Warlamis, F17 and her team at Lithio Storage took third place in the General/High Tech Ventures track.
Finally, exciting news for a Fletcher team that has taken second place in the in the highly selective, international MBA Impact Investing Network & Training (MIINT) Competition at the Wharton School. The Fletcher team beat out top MBA programs such as NYU-Stern, Columbia, and Dartmouth-Tuck to receive up to $25K for their agtech startup. The Fletcher team members, all due to graduate in May 2017, are McKenzie Smith, Michael Cretz, Mayu Tanaka, Alex Chamberlin, and Ashraya Dixit. That’s McKenzie, our student blogger!
This is quite a testament to the growing focus on entrepreneurship here at Fletcher! Congratulations to all the Fletcher entrepreneurs and competitors.
Following up on my post about the Tufts $100K New Ventures Competition, this happy news greeted me from my inbox last Friday. The email came from Professor Weitz, Fletcher’s Entrepreneur Coach (and an alumnus).
Dear Fletcher community,
As Entrepreneur Coach, I am pleased to report that Fletcher startups did quite well in yesterday’s Tufts $100K New Ventures Competition.
A small, but loud, contingent of Fletcher students, faculty, and staff attended to cheer on our four Fletcher startup finalists:
The Blue Water Metrics team (Matt Merighi, F16, Caroline Troein, F13, Jack Whitacre, F16, and Sea Sovereign Thomas, F02) placed second in the Tufts $100K Social Impact Track, which translates into $7,000 cash in startup capital + $5,000 in free legal fees + free office space in downtown Boston.
The Uliza team (Grant Bridgman, F16, Abhishek Maity, F16, and undergraduate student Janet Jepkogei, A17) placed third in the Tufts $100K Social Impact Track, which translates into $3,000 cash in startup capital + $5,000 in free legal fees + free office space in downtown Boston.
Although they didn’t win any prize money, the PowerShare International team (Jamie Powers, F16, Tarun Gopalakrishnan, F16, Nathan Justice, A17, and Jack Whitacre, F16) and the Rashmi team (Rajiv Nair, F16, Sreedhar Nemmani, F16, and Alisha Guffey, F16) successfully competed with over 65 other Tufts startups to place as finalists in the Tufts $100K, which is a significant accomplishment.
Overall Fletcher startups represented 4 out of 6 finalists in the Tufts $100K Social Impact Track, showcasing teamwork of 14 Fletcher students and alumni.
Please join me in congratulating them today!
All my best,
Today and tomorrow, four teams from Fletcher will be showcasing their ventures at the finals of the Tufts 100K New Ventures Competition. The full program of activities includes the competition itself, the Tufts Entrepreneurship Showcase, a keynote address from John Sculley, and the awards ceremony.
In addition to the big prize, there is a $1000 audience award, so the Fletcher teams are encouraging the community to come out and vote for them. It’s a public event and tickets are available.
The four Fletcher teams are:
PowerShare, which also competed last year.
And you can (as usual) follow the competition on Twitter. Good luck to our entrepreneurial students!
PowerShare is the real-time mobile solution that allows governments and voters to communicate, prioritize, and achieve the goals of their community. Conflict and partisanship increase when governments and their constituents do not communicate effectively. Elected officials increasingly demand accurate and timely information about what the majority of their constituents want to achieve. PowerShare offers a mobile and web-based solution: Voters submit concerns, PowerShare transforms concerns into goals, prioritizes goals based on the number of voters concerned, and representatives provide feedback on those priorities based on their expertise.
Samata is a community radio and podcast network that seeks to change prevalent attitudes towards gender norms and domestic violence. Voiced by survivors of gender-based violence and their allies, Samata’s programs will feature discussion groups, storytelling, and advice designed to empower women and their communities to think differently.
The team pitch sessions and award presentation are open to the public. If you’re in the area, plan to stop by and support the Fletcher teams! Good luck to PowerShare and Samata!
Remember last spring’s Fletcher D-Prize winners, Andrew Lala and Tommy Galloway? Well, they’ve successfully converted their concept to a product and they are on the ground in Koudougou, delivering solar lanterns and electricity to rural communities in Burkina Faso! For updates and details about their products, check out Clair de Lune’s website or follow them on Twitter. As you read through the website, keep in mind that Andrew and Tommy only graduated in May. It’s fantastic to see them turn an idea into reality so quickly! I’m looking forward to reading more as their business gets rolling.
Winners of two different competitions were announced this week, and one Fletcher team was successful in both! This exciting news calls for two Cool Stuff blog entries in two days. Here’s an announcement from Dean Bhaskar Chakravorti:
Please join me in congratulating Andrew Lala, F’14 and Tommy Galloway, F’14 as the winners of the inaugural Fletcher D-Prize: Poverty Solutions Venture Competition. Andrew and Tommy will receive $15,000 (and tens of thousands more in non-monetary advice and networks) to help them pilot their Clair de Lune – Solar Light Distributor Platform, which uses existing bus infrastructure and cultural remittance practices to reach the rural poor in Sub-Saharan Africa. This summer, Andrew and Tommy will bring this “poverty solution venture” to 400 families in Burkina Faso. Fletcher D-Prize judges believe that, in two years, Andrew and Tommy will have an impact on the world by proving that you can provide energy to over 100,000 families living on less than a few dollars a day.
We hope that this award, and the competition among a large number of very strong proposals, signals that Fletcher prepares leaders adept not only at crossing borders of all kinds – disciplinary and geographic – but also with the ability to jump across the border of knowledge into entrepreneurial action. We aspire to develop and facilitate international ninjas, if you will. Andrew and Tommy are two terrific examples of such international ninjas. A family that buys a solar lamp saves money on energy expenses and is more productive outside of daylight hours. Household incomes often increase 15-30%. Study hours for children rise by two hours. Solar lamps also erase the far too common dangers that come with kerosene lanterns.
The award will be presented to Andrew and Tommy today, only two days after they received an “audience choice” award at the Tufts $100K New Ventures Competition, at which they were finalists (shown in photo above).
This is the 10th anniversary for the Tufts $100K, which prompted a look back. BostInno selected Educate Lanka as one of the top six ventures to come out of the Tufts $100K competition. Congratulations to our good blog friend Manjula!
It isn’t true that every time I turn around there’s another update about something exciting happening in the environment field here at Fletcher, but it feels that way. Just this spring, here’s some of what we’ve heard:
First, we received an update from Prof. Gallagher, whom you read about on the blog just last week. She wrote:
Dear colleagues, students, and friends of Fletcher,
I am pleased to announce some exciting changes in the Center for International Environment and Resource Policy (CIERP).
Last fall, I invited a number of faculty members from around Fletcher to join CIERP as Faculty Research Affiliates. These faculty members will be working in one or more of our five research programs. From Fletcher we are delighted to have Prof. Jenny Aker, an expert on development and agriculture. From the Economics Department at Tufts, Prof. Gilbert Metcalf, Prof. Kelsey Jack, and Prof. Ujjayant Chakravorty. From Political Science, we welcome Prof. Kent Portney who has agreed to direct our water and oceans program and who is an expert on water policy and sustainable cities, among other topics. We look forward to deepening our research collaborations with these outstanding faculty members at Tufts. As was already announced, we also look forward to having Prof. Avery Cohn in residence for the next academic year as our new professor of environment and resource policy. Avery will lead our Agriculture and Forests program.
Mieke van der Wansem, a long-standing staff member and Fletcher alumna, becomes the new Associate Director of Educational Programs. In this new role, she will enhance the overall effectiveness of CIERP in meeting its educational mission. She will work to expand and sustain executive education, help guide the development and implementation of environment and natural resource policy education initiatives inside and outside the classroom, and manage some of our research projects as appropriate.
Kelly Sims Gallagher
Then we learned that Prof. Gallagher and Prof. Portney had submitted a proposal to the Tufts University provost to create a new “bridge professor” position in the field of water security. Here’s their description:
The Water Security Bridge Professor would work in the interdisciplinary area of international environmental security, covering issues of political sovereignty, human rights, regional security, and sustainable development. It might also include a focus on the policies and mechanisms, military and nonmilitary, nations use in their efforts to gain and protect access to water. A regional focus could be both possible and desirable, for example, in Southeast Asia, the Arctic, and the states of the former Soviet Union.
As blogger, I should have the answer to the question of when the bridge professor will join us. I have to admit that I’m not sure, but I believe it will be for September 2015.
And then, there’s the annual Tufts Energy Conference coming up next weekend, March 8-9. As the conference website says:
The Tufts Energy Conference (TEC) is a two-day energy conference that brings together experts from the private, public, and nonprofit sectors with students and professionals to discuss critical global energy issues. The conference is entirely organized by students from a broad range of backgrounds in engineering, international affairs, urban planning, and economics. From a two-panel event in 2006, TEC has grown into one of the largest entirely student-run energy conferences in the region.
Experts from the private, public and nonprofit sectors, students, and professionals are all invited to attend TEC 2014 on March 8-9, 2014 (Saturday and Sunday), which will focus on Shifting Dynamics in Emerging Markets.
The conference agenda looks terrific! Come on over!
Last (or at least, the last piece of news I’ve been able to keep track of), there’s the 2014 Tufts Energy Competition, with a prize of $3,000 to jump-start an energy idea, and with a new-this-year solar competition:
Working on a project on energy or sustainability that can be transformed into a winning proposal? The Tufts Energy Competition is looking for your ideas. This competition is a celebration of innovative, student-driven solutions to energy challenges. The goal of the Tufts Energy Competition is ultimately to implement projects that explore solutions to key energy issues. The winning team will receive up to $3000 to implement their project and the runner-up team will receive $2000. Every Tufts student is eligible to apply, including engineering students, undergraduates, medical students, Fletcher students, and more.
Previous finalists and winners include:
• A Split Junction Solar Concentrator for More Efficient Electricity Generation
• Giving Students the Chance to Choose Their Energy
• Efficient Hygiene Initiatives: Bringing Ecological Sanitation to Thottiypatti
• Solar-Powered Uninterruptible Power Systems
• Ocean-Based Algae Energy
• Wind Turbines and Solar Cookers in Zimbabwe
• High Voltage Lithium Ion Battery Management System
The winner will be announced next weekend at the Tufts Energy Conference.
So that’s the round-up of a semester’s news for the Center for International Environment and Resource Policy and generally in the field. And it’s news that assures us that next year will be exciting, too!
Here’s a new initiative worth noting. This year, in partnership with D-Prize, Fletcher launches The Fletcher D-Prize: Poverty Solutions Venture Competition. Starting off the yearlong activity, the Fletcher D-Prize will offer an “ideation session” this week for budding social entrepreneurs throughout the university. As planning continues for the competition, I’ll be reporting back on the blog. For now, the competition’s Fletcher sponsor, the Institute for Business in a Global Context, is spreading the word via twitter. (
#FletcherDPrize and #FletcherEntrepreneur.)
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