In September 2020, the Hult Business School launched a virtual business competition dubbed the ‘Hult Young Minds Challenge’. The competition was designed to promote entrepreneurial thinking among high school students. It also aimed to help students learn how to pitch their business ideas to a panel of expert judges. The competition attracted 30 schools from Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Ivory Coast and Kenya.
In the last year many of us have thought about our immunity more than ever in the light of the findings that people with compromised immune systems are most vulnerable to the deadly coronavirus. Perhaps we have even been reminded of Charles Darwin’s theory of ‘Survival of the fittest’ which is used occasionally and probably even facetiously in our conversations.
Sadly the health of our businesses have been challenged as much as that of our bodies and minds. Job losses and the collapse of corporations have become an everyday reality. Small businesses have been particularly hard hit. With no sure end in sight many have had to adjust; being inclined to channel their entrepreneurial spirit and capitalize on technological innovation.
At Turi, we are celebrating the Senior School Business Studies Department, led by Mr Richard Mbithi. Their efforts in developing business minds of the future are already proving fruitful. Two teams of students from our Year 12 cohort entered the Hult Business School competition.
After a series of highly competitive rounds, our teams reached the final round and put up a very creditable performance against what the judges described as very intense competition. Given that our Year 12s were up against Year 13 students from many other schools, their performance was all the more remarkable. Wendy and Isha who competed under the name ‘Bright Suppliers’ emerged in third place while Varun and Louis who presented their proposals as ‘Horrison Clothing’ achieved second place.
Both Bright Suppliers and Horrison Clothing based their presentations on business opportunities arising from the crisis brought about by the pandemic. While Bright Suppliers proposed going into manufacturing and taking advantage of the decrease in the prices of some raw materials, price decreases, Horrison considered the need for teenagers and young adults to remain fashionable at all (even difficult) times!
While these business plans may not be fully actualised this time round, their SMART analysis of concepts and the market were very impressive. Their detailed strategic planning and accurate financial projections which led to the awarding of second and third place provided ample evidence that the effort placed in developing not just the minds but hearts, souls and bodies of our students contributes to placing them among the ‘fittest’ future business and thought leaders of the continent. Among other prizes they were awarded $10,000 worth of scholarships each to the celebrated Business School.
Congratulations Wendy, Isha, Varun and Louis for not just surviving but thriving!
Many thanks to Hult Business School for the opportunity and the effort in activating the entrepreneurial ambition of young minds.
The Hult Business School is a private university which offers Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs with a specialisation in business-related programs. The institution has branches in the USA, UK, China and the United Arab Emirates.