Home > Press > Students win $180,000 to tackle world's problems
rojects to help new mothers in Nigeria and orphans in Nepal, and to encourage bike sharing and energy efficiency in Berkeley, are among 50 student proposals receiving a total of $179,000 in the third annual "Bears Breaking Boundaries" competition at the University of California, Berkeley.
Students win $180,000 to tackle world's problems
Berkeley, CA | Posted on June 6th, 2008
The competition, designed to find and fund students' best ideas for addressing the world's toughest problems, received 130 submissions from undergraduate and graduate UC Berkeley students. Students were invited to design and implement new initiatives in a broad range of areas, including energy and environment, curricular innovation, neglected diseases, improving student life, nanotechnology, synthetic biology, information technology for society and new collaborations with non-profit organizations.
"Cal students have fantastic ideas for enhancing the curriculum, improving the campus, and addressing major societal challenges such as climate change and global health," said Thomas Kalil, special assistant to the chancellor for science and technology and director of Big a campus initiative which co-sponsors the student competition. "The contest is our version of 'American Idol' - it helps shine the spotlight on our most creative, energetic and entrepreneurial students."
Among the winning proposals are projects to:
* develop a wearable device to continuously assess the cognitive capability of people with diseases such as Alzheimer's
* reduce maternal deaths in Nigeria by bringing reliable power and communications to delivery wards
* launch 10 "Idea Labs" - multidisciplinary teams of students with a shared interest in topics such as safe drinking water and sanitation, green-collar jobs and earthquake-resistant construction
* expand UC Berkeley's education, service and advocacy efforts to rebuild the Gulf Coast following the destruction of Hurricane Katrina
* create a new minor in food systems and sustainability at UC Berkeley
* partner with the city of Berkeley on an innovative model for financing investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency
* develop a "green bike share" program for the campus
* design synthetic "platelets" - the blood cells responsible for clotting - for patients suffering from cancer or major blood loss
* create a program to survey and control the prevalence of lice infestations in orphanage children in Kathmandu Valley, Nepal
In addition to providing initial support for the projects, Kalil also works with student teams to identify additional partners and sources of funding. For example, the Blum Center for Developing Economies and the Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society (CITRIS), both based at UC Berkeley, have agreed to provide an additional $25,000 to support the project to save mothers' lives in Nigeria.
Award recipients will also have the opportunity to post their projects on the Big Ideas marketplace site (http://bigideas.berkeley.edu), a place where alumni and other donors can select projects that they feel particularly passionate about and make financial or in-kind contributions.
In addition to Big and CITRIS, campus organizations and units involved in Bears Breaking Boundaries as either hosts or financial sponsors of one or more of the contests include the Associated Students of the University of California, the Center of Integrated Nanomechanical Systems, the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, the Division of Biological Sciences in the College of Letters and Science, the new Center for Energy and Environmental Innovation, the Berkeley Institute of the Environment, the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, the Science, Technology & Engineering Policy Group and the Synthetic Biology Engineering Research Center. The competition also receives support from AT&T, the Molecular Foundry at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the Deshpande Foundation.
Initial funding for Big was provided by the Omidyar Network, an investment group created by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar and dedicated to individual empowerment.
For more information, please click here
Copyright © UC Berkeley
If you have a comment, please Contact
Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.
News and information
Graphene and Amaranthus Superparamagnets: Breakthrough nanoparticles discovery of Indian researcher September 23rd, 2014
New NIH/DOE Grant for Life Science Studies at NSLS-II: Funding will support operation of three powerful experimental stations designed to reveal detailed structures of proteins, viruses, and more September 23rd, 2014
BSA Distinguished Lecture Tuesday, 10/14: 'LCLS: A Stunning New View Through X-ray Laser Eyes' September 23rd, 2014
Brookhaven Lab's National Synchrotron Light Source II Approved to Start Routine Operations: Milestone marks transition to exciting new chapter September 23rd, 2014
Biosensors Get a Boost from Graphene Partnership: $5 Million Investment Supports Dozens of Jobs and Development of 300mm Fabrication Process and Wafer Transfer Facility September 18th, 2014
Malvern technology delivers Malvern reliability in multi-disciplinary lab at Queen Mary University London September 9th, 2014
State University of New York Trustees Unanimously Approve SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly) as New Name for Merged SUNY CNSE / SUNYIT September 9th, 2014
New Vice President Takes Helm at CNSE CMOST: Catherine Gilbert To Lead CNSE Children’s Museum of Science and Technology Through Expansion And Relocation August 29th, 2014
Future flexible electronics based on carbon nanotubes: Study in Applied Physics Letters show how to improve nanotube transistor and circuit performance with fluoropolymers September 23rd, 2014
Nanotubes help healing hearts keep the beat: Rice University, Texas Children’s Hospital patch for defects enhances electrical connections between cells September 23rd, 2014
Immune system is key ally in cyberwar against cancer: Rice University study yields new two-step strategy for weakening cancer September 23rd, 2014
Los Alamos Researchers Uncover New Properties in Nanocomposite Oxide Ceramics for Reactor Fuel, Fast-Ion Conductors: Misfit dislocations are key to transport properties across material interfaces September 23rd, 2014
New chip promising for tumor-targeting research September 22nd, 2014
SouthWest NanoTechnologies (SWeNT) Receives NIST Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase 1 Award to Produce Greater than 99% Semiconducting Single-Wall Carbon Nanotubes September 19th, 2014
Big Results Require Big Ambitions: Three young UCSB faculty receive CAREER awards from the National Science Foundation September 18th, 2014
Effective Nanotechnology Innovations to Receive Mustafa Prize September 16th, 2014