By Neelay Patil – Master in Management Program, September 2014 Intake


This term, I had the extraordinary opportunity to participate in the Hult Prize Competition. The contest inspires over 20,000 business school students annually to become social entrepreneurs, applying management skills to tackle global challenges related to poverty, health, education, and more. Students collaborate in teams of 3 to 5 to design financially sustainable and socially impactful startups. For the global winner: a grand prize of $1 million.

My team advanced to the regional finals in London, where we presented our idea to address this year’s challenge: to provide early childhood education to 10 million children in urban slums by 2020. Although our app-based solution was not selected as the weekend’s winner, we gained valuable feedback from the judges. My team was also able to meet dynamic entrepreneurs from over 30 countries and network with judges who are top executives at their companies, including McKinsey and Coca Cola. In addition, we heard pitches for incredible ideas to transform early childhood education, ranging from online platforms to high-tech toys.

Overall, the competition was a fantastic experience that allowed me to apply the business skill set I developed in the MIM to critical social issues. It also taught me about what it takes to succeed as an entrepreneur – passion, perseverance, and teamwork. Anyone interested in social entrepreneurship should be sure to check out the Hult Prize Competition next year!


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