Dell Social Innovation Challenge – $350,000 for Student Entrepreneurs

Dell Social Innovation Challenge to Jumpstart Students’ Innovative Business Ideas with More Than $350,000 in Awards and Seed Money
– Winning teams to be announced at Awards Show on May 14 at Austin Music Hall
– Special guests K’Naan, Mother Falcon and others to help shine a spotlight on university entrepreneurs at Awards Show

Students from around the world will gather in Austin on May 14 to vie for the grand prize of the Dell Social Innovation Challenge (DSIC). More than $350,000 in awards and seed money will be given to student finalists to help see their business ideas to fruition. DSIC recognizes undergraduate and graduate students from around the world who envision, create and implement social innovation projects.

Leading up to the event, the five teams participate in networking, mentoring opportunities with social innovation leaders and then deliver their final pitches to a panel of judges comprised of business leaders, entrepreneurs and venture capitalists.

The five hopeful finalist teams comprise:

Citizen Power / Sunriding: seeks to build a peer-to-peer online social platform for community-sourced solar installations, especially in high-density urban areas. The website will help plan, finance, build & maintain installations.

Foot Soldiers: sells affordable shoes for the 48 million Bangladeshi who cannot afford proper footwear and are thus at risk for various diseases associated with bare feet. The project will use rubber tires that are currently thrown away or burnt as Bangladesh’s car population rises. creates a “401k for charity” by helping people make payroll contributions to tax-exempt “micro-foundation” accounts, from which they can give funds over time to nonprofits. The project will help companies run simple, engaging workplace giving campaigns.

Semka Biomedical Technologies: developing a device capable of performing non-invasive tumor biopsies through blood extraction, specifically targeting metastatic cells that give rise to new tumors in the body and increase chances of death.

Solar Conduction Dryer (SCD): aims to address the 20 to 30 percent food spoilage rate for poor rural Indian farmers, via cost-effective dehydrators powered by solar conduction. Farmers will keep more of their crop and can sell dehydrated fruits and vegetables as another income source.

The winning team will be announced at the awards show starting at 6 pm CDT on May 14 at Austin Music Hall, where business leaders and social innovators from around the world will cheer on the participants and their work. Musician K’Naan, rising Austin music group Mother Falcon, entrepreneur and author Roy Spence, and others will also help shine a spotlight on these young entrepreneurs.

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Earlier in the day a small group of leading social innovation experts along with the students will share their best practices during a Social Innovation Think Tank. The interactive discussion will highlight why social innovation is ramping up now and how we can bring it to scale. Topics will include the role of social networking, how capital markets are adapting, the intersection of education and entrepreneurship, and how to improve the quality and quantity of social innovations.

About Dell Social Innovation Challenge
The Dell Social Innovation Challenge (DSIC), identifies and supports promising young social innovators who dedicate themselves to solving the world’s most pressing problems with their transformative ideas. DSIC, which is the flagship social entrepreneurship initiative of the RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service in the LBJ School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin, provides university students with world-class teaching and training, as well as with start-up capital and access to a network of mentors and advisors.

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About Dell
Dell Inc. (NASDAQ: DELL) listens to customers and delivers innovative technology and services that give them the power to do more. Powering the possible is Dell’s commitment to putting its technology and expertise to work where it can do the most good for people and the planet.

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