Changing the lives of people around the globe
Suzi Sosa on young social innovators work to solve the world's most pressing problems
- Duration 9:18
- Date May 22, 2012
Suzi Sosa on young social innovators work to solve the world's most pressing problems
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Hey guys welcome back -- -- -- over the scene here and hitting the headlines inside this box here foxnews.com live.
Still our challenge as program that's launched in 2007.
By the RGK center for philanthropy and community service in the LBJ school of public affairs.
At the great.
University of Texas I say that because that's where the school okay so it is great.
I'm gonna be biased on that -- why that city -- -- that's where I went to school so why not to -- is a great story in for real.
Deal -- dot org by the way -- challenged dot org used the web site where you wanna go and we know because it's back by deal as a Dell computers because.
He too went to.
So tell me -- first of all when.
What it is why it was needed in the first place -- -- -- still needed and how it came.
So we are transforming.
University students into active social entrepreneurs.
And why this is needed is because imagine what the world looks like to a twenty year olds.
Global problems are not getting any better the job market is terrible.
And yet they want to make an impact they're looking for an opportunity to do something to create significance.
And we are showing them the way so -- -- challenge.
We give students the tools and the funding.
To put into practice their big ideas they have to make the world better.
So ideas like what could be an example yes -- a great example would be -- power this was our 2008.
Grand prize winner.
And this team of engineering students came up with an idea for a power generator.
That is fueled by the discarded waste from rice farming.
So they're operating in India and now they're in over sixty villages and each of these generators creates enough electricity.
Power irrigation during the day and then the village homes at night.
And you mentioned India because now even though this challenges launched in 2007 is now going worldwide.
By the 2011.
Direct yes and so tell me about some of the countries that will be benefiting from these great idea it's.
-- so we now have 20000.
Students from a 105 countries.
And they are proposing ideas all over the world we have ideas in India in Kenya.
In Hawaii in the United States in Mexico.
And so it universities from all around the world and ideas in in countries around the world as well.
So the idea is that you you obviously want to tap into the brain power of these students.
But it's not just -- not for -- program where it sure if you do well and you come up with a great idea great we love capitalism you make a lot of money but it's really about.
Who is benefiting from this as well that's part of the big success at this rate.
Yes that's absolutely right.
So what makes our program unique is that all of our students ideas put social impact and financial sustainability on equal footing.
So it's not enough to just have -- do better idea he actually have to figure out a way for it to find itself.
Really yeah so so for instance that that that's how it's working you were talking about the -- the husk.
Ideas -- if it if Clinton self hollow though.
-- so in the case of -- -- word that villagers each pay a small amount.
For the electricity.
We have another example which is there really interest seeing its project fits in that type here Islam in Kenya.
And this student entrepreneur came up with an idea for -- -- school.
Which would be a traditional four traditional nonprofit idea and would rely on government funding or charitable funding.
But he wanted to make it sustainable and scalable on its phone.
So what the innovation he came up with is he paired it with four other community services that all generate revenue to support the school.
So there's a well a public -- treating a health clinic and a computer lab.
That people pay for and that funds the school so it doesn't grow rely on charity.
It's really incredible and I think it's definitely.
Very crucial for these times that we're living in.
That -- it's Steve we live in you know we we say it's a global world the global market that everybody's you know in each other's backyards and got to help each other out.
And that's the bottom line that's what I think it.
Talked to me about -- begin on the receiving end you know who qualifies.
Why they qualify.
Sure aren't challenges open to university students anywhere in the world both undergraduate and graduate.
And from any discipline that's one of the unique things about our program is you don't have to be a business student to participate we have.
Education students engineering students pharmacy students medical students.
Any student with a big idea can participate.
And then we give them the training and the funding that they need to -- their ideas into action.
So what's -- weird how do you get and I know I did -- me add this website is still challenged out of work so.
You're a student those parents and apply isn't submits their ideas and -- and sort of a mission statement against.
Yes so we're taking -- -- the traditional business plan competition to sort of a three that oh.
And -- set of submitting a business plan they create a project page and so on that project page -- post videos photos and impact statement.
They can launch they can upload a business plan if they want.
But the idea is that that page becomes kind of a workshop or storefront.
For their idea.
And then our judges reviewed those -- online project pages to select the winners.
But anyone can check out the projects on -- challenge dot org this here we have over 1700.
And I love the fact that you said that it becomes an impact statement not a mission statement you know like what how this going to impact not what you want to do you wish to do it's like.
No here's the proof is hidden in the putting and how it helps people and communities and and in countries and you know provinces whoever might really needed to tell me something that we haven't -- that you and get out there.
So I think one of the big.
The benefits of this program really relates to the fact that students these days you know they're graduating and there are just no jobs.
And so they ask me all the time you know Suzy what advice would you give me so I can get a job when I graduate and I say -- piece of advice I can give you this to stop looking for a job.
Jobs are really difficult these days in fact what you need to do is you need to create the future that you want you need to create the job that you want.
And that's one of the biggest things that our program aims to do is empower students with the tools and the resources and the confidence they need.
To create the job and the future that they want that as well as the -- and financial resource is right tell me how that works absolutely so we give over a 150000.
Dollars of awards to students every year.
And then through the exposure they get in our program they're also able to get funding from other sources as well.
God and in accordance to their business plan that determines how much you know they paid themselves and with the use for other administrative cost itself played.
That type of person would go for this in the first place of course is this that we all wanted.
22 to make money we live in this great country where capitalism rules but it's so nice that I think.
It taps into the fact that you find people really want to help others.
Absolutely and help themselves I think this is for young people today they have this.
Very intuitive sense of wanting to do well and do good -- and so how can I make a living and you know move out of my parents' house for example.
But also do something that has meaning and that has purpose.
And we show them how to do that.
You also -- you help them anywhere to go but do we you help them not only by eight going to tell a challenge dot org.
And and and and applying in the first place and you give them some seed money if you will you help them along the way like once they're -- team -- -- -- the -- to the wolves right.
Absolutely not and I really signature part of our program is the membership so we matched every single one of our 250 semifinalists team has been an individual -- And that's something that we're always looking for is we take.
Volunteer managers volunteer judges and also partners corporate partners Ngo partners that want to help our students accelerate their impacts in the long run.
Last thing the -- go how successful are you in terms of your.
It's -- been going on since 2007 which is not a long time but do you have students who come back and think that's what I'm actually working actually was able to move out of my parents' basement.
So we have an -- over 25.
Winners that have been generating impacts for many many years and I can say.
That we've created -- you know hundreds of jobs and economic and social impact for people around the world.
Very good since he feels that I like and he's using -- is the executive director it's still social innovation challenge.
Dell's challenge dot org there is the page you wanna go to to check this great program I'll thank you so much to his feelings say hi everybody in Austin and them come back I -- I will it -- I was just there has been to London England a couple of years Nelson did of that yes thank you so much definitely big huge so.