A group of UC students travelled to India in June 2013 to pilot their projects and meet with venture capitalists at the Acara Summer Institute in Bangalore. The students received the opportunity after their teams won both the gold and silver award at the Acara Challenge in Minnesota in February 2013, besting schools such as Cornell and the University of Minnesota.
Evan Gilbert, BBA '13, won gold in presenting for his team that included Carrie Lierl, A&S ’13, Bojan Lazic, BBA ’13, and Zubin Sadri, BBA ’13, and for their “Humble Commode," a closed loop system that could provide literally millions of people with access to toilets.
Mathew Davenport, CEAS ’16, won silver in presenting for his team that included Alex Hernandez, BBA ‘16, Josh Haner, BBA '13, Abe Zbornik, BBA ’15, for "CincyVeil," a method that converts toxic chromium waste in tanneries into a non-toxic form using agricultural waste.
The students developed their projects in the UC Forward class called "Take the Challenge for Sustainable Development." The social entrepreneurship and design course is taught by Lindner faculty Ratee Apana, associate professor-educator of international business/social entrepreneurship, and Rajan Kamath, associate professor of strategy and social entrepreneurship.
Students were partnered with the Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee, and the Vellore Institute of Technology, Vellore, in India, to assist in their projects. The UC Forward initiative pairs students, faculty and external experts to create innovative and transformative answers to today’s global challenges.