Students Think Big for Final Big Idea

24 November 2020 The Big Idea

Students Think Big for Final Big Idea


Members of the winning teams at our online awards night, joined by Steven Persson, CEO, The Big Issue/Homes for Homes, Tracey Kennair, Digital Transformation Partner & Deputy Chair, PwC, and Keynote Speaker Nick Pearce, CEO, HoMie.

 

An employment opportunity for an Indigenous community, smart chips in motorcycles and helmets and urban farming in underutilised spaces were announced as winners of the final The Big Idea competition, in a unique virtual awards night.

The Big Idea is a national university competition co-ordinated by Australia’s longest standing social enterprise, The Big Issue. The prestigious competition invites students to develop a concept and business plan for a social business or social enterprise that can create positive change.

Since beginning in 2012 The Big Idea has seen ideas from more than 2,500 students across 22 universities. The competition has helped foster a new generation of social entrepreneurs, and we have been continually impressed by the passion, creativity and dedication that students have for social enterprise.

This year marked the final year of The Big Idea competition, and featured some amazing ideas from university students around Australia. More than 200 students from six universities entered the competition, and out of these, three undergraduate and two postgraduate teams were chosen to progress to the final judging, held on Tuesday afternoon. In true 2020 fashion both the final judging and awards ceremony after were held through an online event.

The Big Idea 2020 Undergraduate Winner

BlackTank Soaps (University of Melbourne) - Employment for women in a remote Indigenous community making handmade soaps, incorporating traditional Indigenous knowledge.
Students: Marina Bishop, Maya Hall, Avryl Hart.

The Big Idea 2020 Postgraduate Winners 

This year's winner was a tie!

RoSTech Innovators (Central Queensland University) - Reducing casualties in road accidents in India with smart chips in motorcycles and helmets. The project prioritises work for women in STEM and profits are donated to STEM education for girls and women.
Students: Muhammad Ahsan Ahmed, Deeksha Rahanoo

Farms For Futures (University of Melbourne) - Creates opportunities for disadvantaged people through urban farming in underutilised spaces.
Students: Ife Adesina, Nelson Connelly, Shengyu (Heidi) Huang, Jaymie Moynihan, Chunyang (Charlotte) Wang

The panel of high-profile finalist judges consisted of Urban Development Institute of Australia (Victoria) CEO Danni Hunter, PwC Digital Transformation Partner & Deputy Chair Tracey Kennair, Westpac Group Chief Property Officer Suzanne Currie, Monash University Chancellor Simon McKeon and The Big Issue/Homes for Homes CEO Steven Persson. Thank you to all the judges for sharing your knowledge with the teams.

As part of their prize, students from the winning teams will receive iPads and professional development and immersion with The Big Issue and PwC. A big congratulations to all teams for their hard work and enthusiasm in what has been a challenging year.

While The Big Idea has wrapped up, make sure to keep up with our website and social pages for more ways to get involved with The Big Issue.

 

The Big Idea 2020 Finalists

Undergraduate:

BlackTank Soaps (University of Melbourne) - Employment for women in a remote Indigenous community making handmade soaps, incorporating traditional Indigenous knowledge.

WeHelp (UNSW) - Casual work for older Australians as English conversation partners for international students.

EcoSneaker (Curtin University) - Reduces carbon footprint by creating fully recycled and recyclable shoes.

Postgraduate:

RoSTech Innovators (Central Queensland University) - Reducing casualties in road accidents in India with smart chips in motorcycles and helmets. The project prioritises work for women in STEM and profits are donated to STEM education for girls and women.

Farms For Futures (University of Melbourne) - Creates opportunities for disadvantaged people through urban farming in underutilised spaces.

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