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Apps for Change Pitch Competition

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Team FaceIT takes the day!

Changing the world isn’t easy, but sometimes all it takes is an app.

Eleven teams of Georgetown students pitted their ideas to change the world through technology against one another at the first mobile pitch competition on November 18, 2011.  Sponsored by The Global Social Enterprise Initiative, the competition drew students from across the university and challenged them to create social value through mobile technology.

Pitches were judged by an esteemed panel of industry experts from organizations including The Wireless Foundations, Mobile Commons and Pearson Education. Teams each had seven minutes to present their idea and convince both the judges and the audience that their idea would have the biggest bang.  Teams were judged on the magnitude of expected social impact, presentation style, use of technology, and business feasibility.  At stake: $2,000 in prize money!

Ideas included apps to:

  • Help patients manage prescriptions and health insurance in emergency situations
  • Allow users to network with like-minded individuals around social or development problems
  • Deliver social responsibility ratings for consumer brands, weighted by the user’s personal priorities
  • Enable traditional publishers to create mobile magazines across platforms
  • Use facial recognition software to enable identification services in the developing world
  • Help teachers leverage flash cards to reinforce classroom teachings
  • Promote efficient events management for social causes
  • Improve student access to University enrichment activities, and quality analytic support

Ultimately, the judges deemed Team FaceIT the winner with their proposal for an app to provide identification services using facial recognition software for people in developing countries who currently lack a method of personal identification for official uses.  Team FaceIT (Caroline Decker, Olivia Lew, Karthikeyan Ramachandran, Bradley Smith, and Samantha McAnulty) received $1,500 in prize money in addition to mentorship by Mobile Commons and Twilio to develop the app over the coming year.

The audience awarded the $500 People’s Choice Prize to a team of CCT graduate students for their app proposal that would help organize university events in an intuitive manner for students.