The fifth annual Alleviating Poverty Through Entrepreneurship Summit kicks off at 9 a.m. Saturday at Mershon Auditorium at The Ohio State University.
The free, one-day event brings together students, academics, practitioners, policy makers, and community members interested in how business and innovation can help advance the battle against poverty.
This year, APTE will have more than 10 local and national speakers who are working on novel solutions to help the needy, and who organizers believe will astound and inspire attendees.
For those unable to attend in person, the summit is being livestreamed on the APTE website. Additionally, the U.S. Embassy in Senegal will be livestreaming the event.
“With a 48 percent unemployment rate and a very large young population, Senegal is a developing country where social entrepreneurship could have a huge impact on improving the livelihoods of individuals,” says Danielle Short, a fourth year Ohio State student majoring in international business, and one of the summit’s organizers.
“Last summer, I helped create and instruct an after-school program on social entrepreneurship for high school students there with my friend, who attends and helps out with events regularly at the library in the U.S. Embassy,” Short says, adding that she thought APTE would be a great opportunity to involve students from the program.
APTE’s social entrepreneurship business plan competition offered anyone under 30 who is interested in reducing poverty through market-based solutions the chance to share their ideas and win money to make them a reality.
In addition to sponsoring the $5,000 grand prize, Global Brigades Ventures will give the winner a spot in its incubation program, which will allow them to tests their concept across Global Brigades networks. The Business of Good Foundation is sponsoring the $2,000 runner-up prize.
Eight judges evaluated all the business plans and chose three finalists to speak onstage at APTE and set up booths at the summit’s Innovation Marketplace.
In the past, APTE organizers have considered the Innovation Marketplace the main avenue for attendees to get plugged in and join initiatives that are already successfully working to create positive change.
However, this year, they are emphasizing the involvement aspect through the Impact Workshop Program, which will take place during a four-week span after the summit.
Targeted at students, the program will guide participants from inspiration to a tangible solution to ending poverty, through instructional workshops. Space is limited, but registration is open on the APTE website.
APTE’s last session ends at 4 p.m. and the Innovation Marketplace is open from 4 to 6 p.m.
More than 900 people have already registered for the summit, and organizers would like to have 1,500 attendees.
To learn register, click here.