Edinburgh students on winning team for Social Storm 2016

Two Edinburgh students formed part of the winning team in this year’s Social Storm, a unique hackathon-style event where over 250 students from 22 universities across the world joined forces to tackle 2 global issues in 24 hours.

The Careers Service and Launch.ed decided to take part in Social Storm for the first time this year in response to student demand for hands-on experience of developing social enterprise skills. They joined students from universities in the UK, Argentina, India, Ghana, Belgium, Spain, Italy and Finland.

“We were delighted that we had the 3rd largest number of students signed up across the competition, which was a great achievement for our first ever Social Storm”

Ruth Donnelly, Careers Service

It was an unforgettable, intense experience for the students, who developed their ideas for a product or service that addresses one of two issues stemming from the United Nations’ Global Goals – food security or sustainable housing. Working remotely with partners across 5 time zones added to the challenge, but the students maintained their enthusiasm and concentration over the 24 hour period to successfully pitch their ideas and business plans to the judges.

Pierre-Andre Belle, a 1st year Mechanical Engineer and Euan Briggs, a 2nd year History and Politics student worked with students at the Universities of Aston and East Anglia to come up with the winning idea for sustainable housing by growing hemp in Kenya as a viable building material to replace concrete: YouTube

“This was a great opportunity to push yourself and find out where your limits are. I learnt so much from seeing how people think very differently from me and taking that on board. I would definitely join Social Storm again”

Pierre-Andre Belle

“Social Storm helped me understand that I am very mission-driven and analytical but also way more creative than I thought. Academic work doesn’t necessarily give you the opportunity to find this out about yourself”.

Euan Briggs

Euan and Pierre-Andre each won £100 as well as the priceless experience.

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