FT/CITI INGENUITY AWARDS 2012: EdSurge was on hand at the first annual Financial Times/Citi Ingenuity Awards held in NYC. With a theme of "Urban Ideas in Action," finalists and winners were presented across four categories: Education, Healthcare, Energy, and Infrastructure.
In the Education strand, College Possible took home the top prize. The U.S.-based organization utilizes the manpower of AmeriCorps to provide college guidance -- exam prep, application help, financial aid literacy, and mentorship -- to low-income students. Serving high schoolers in their junior and senior years, the program provides over 300 hours of programming per student.
We were especially fortunate to sit next to another Education Finalist, Navtej Johar of Abhyas Trust in Delhi, India. Its major initiative, The Urban Response, has school-aged children adopt, follow, and maintain a street element -- signs, trees, poles, etc. -- to increase young citizens' awareness of their local environment. Johar, a dance and yoga instructor, was moved to action after witnessing his nieces and nephews develop indifferent attitudes towards their local community. "You only need to focus on a single thing, no matter how small or large the impact. If everyone can do that, things can change," he says. Unable to escape edtechie-ness of the Silicon Valley, we could only suggest a FourSquare integration as we listened in awe!
Other winners included the Community Cooker Foundation (Kenya) for Energy, GSK New Citizen Health Care Project (China) for Healthcare, and JCDeaux (France) for Infrastructure. The Community Cooker Foundation, an initiative to create low-emissions heat and energy through trash incineration, took home the top overall prize.