The Second Annual VT KnowledgeWorks Global Partnership Week held on August 21 - August 27, 2011, provided a unique opportunity for student teams and faculty from all over the world to collaborate and initiate their personal global networks through learning, socialization, and friendly competition in Blacksburg and Roanoke, Virginia. During this week-long celebration of entrepreneurship, student teams from Austria, Canada, Chile, England, France, and the USA competed for a $25,000 grand prize and the VT KnowledgeWorks Global Challenge Trophy.
Top honors went to Guillermo Vargas Keith, Matias Rojas, Andrés Testón, and Mauricio Ulloa of team Kimeltu representing Pontifical Catholic University of Chile in Santiago, Chile. Their winning concept is a web platform which allows educators to measure students’ performance and to monitor their progress by taking easily generated tests. As a permanent tribute to their outstanding effort, their name and university will be etched into the base of the Global Challenge Trophy, which will reside at VT KnowledgeWorks in the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center.
Two runner-up teams, Bio-Sense Diagnostics representing the University of Kent in England and OOHLALA Mobile representing the University of Toronto in Canada, each received $5,000.
William Humphries, Phoebe Maund, Emma Perot, Claudia Rathje, and Caroline Tolley of team Bio-Sense Diagnostics presented a simple diagnostic test for the fast and efficient diagnosis of specific tumors, based on the concept of the home pregnancy test. Peter Cen and James Dang of team OOHLALA Mobile presented a mobile application that helps college students navigate their campus life and provide a platform to student unions and services to engage with students.
The competition finals of VT KnowledgeWorks Global Student Business Concept Challenge at the Dumas Center on August 25, 2011 were part of a week-long celebration of student entrepreneurship and students’ important contributions to the global economy. Julie Newman, Executive Producer and on-air host for Blue Ridge PBS was the Master of Ceremonies of the Global Student Challenge. At the Hotel Roanoke and Conference Center on August 24, 2011, student attendees participated in an Entrepreneurship in the 21st Century Workshop led by Jim Flowers, Director of VT KnowledgeWorks, and attended the Tastes and Sounds of the Valleys Reception highlighting unique food and music of the New River and Roanoke Valleys.
During the rest of their visit to Virginia, international teams remained in Blacksburg, housed by local families. They spent interactive time with successful technology companies and enjoyed fellowship with Virginia Tech students of the German Club, Graduate School, Entrepreneur Club, and Pi Kappa Alpha. Activities included tours of the Virginia Tech campus and Lane Stadium, a downtown souvenir shopping experience, and hike in the Cascades. Festive meals highlighted the entire week, including the awards banquet and flag presentation ceremony at The Inn at Virginia Tech hosted by the Virginia Tech Office of Outreach and International Affairs.
Pictures of the Global Challenge Celebration are available on VT KnowledgeWorks on Facebook and VTKW Global Student Challenge on Facebook. You're invited to view the guide listing all participating finalist teams in the Global Challenge and to read more about the Global Partnership on Inside VT KnowledgeWorks and the Global Student Business Concept Challenge on Inside VT KnowledgeWorks.
All of this is made possible thanks to the generous Global Partnership Event sponsors: Allegheny Brokerage Company, Inc., CCS-Inc., Economic Development Authority of Montgomery County, VA, G.J. Hopkins Inc., Interactive Achievement, Inc., LeClairRyan, LewisGale Hospital – Montgomery, Newport News Shipbuilding, aDivision of Huntington Ingalls Industries, Novozymes, Rackspace, Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), StellarOne, TechLab, Third Security, The Branch Group Inc., VPT, Inc.
In addition, we thank other contributors to the VT KnowledgeWorks Global Partnership Week.