The Institute of Environmental Management and Sustainability (IEMS), a venture of BEEAH Education and Ajman University’s College of Business Administration, have announced the winners of the “Sustainability for Entrepreneurship & Innovation” competition to spotlight the sustainability innovations of aspiring graduates from the university.
During the four-day event, freshmen and senior year students from the university participated in a series of workshops and gained practical insights to curate innovative ideas around sustainability.
IEMS delivered professional courses on sustainability and the circular economy and entrepreneurship and innovation.
Competition participants were also invited on a tour of BEEAH Group’s waste management complex, touring the several specialised waste processing facilities and the adjacent Sharjah Waste to Energy plant.
Speaking about the event, Hind Al Huwaidi, Chief Education Officer at BEEAH Group, said: “Our youth play an important role in translating the actions being made today, particularly during the upcoming COP28, into lasting positive change for the coming generations. Through this competition in collaboration with Ajman University, we are spotlighting innovative ideas from these students and encouraging them to further develop their concepts for implementation in the UAE and beyond.”
During the finale, held at the BEEAH Headquarters, students had the opportunity to present their ideas to a panel of judges, including experts from BEEAH and Ajman University.
Three winning ideas were selected, which highlighted unique possibilities to drive sustainability across major sectors.
Students Maryam Yaser, Shahd Albuali, and Shirin Ibrahim won first place for their concept “GREENSIP”.
Their beverage bottle is made from PHA, a plastic with biodegradable properties, housing a plantable seed.
The prototype, the IEMS shared, has the potential to redefine packaging design to be more environmentally friendly and contribute to the planting of seeds with proper disposal.
Aya Babbili and her team came in second place for “AIRQUATIC”.
The prototype uses an advanced system with sophisticated sensors, and enables sustainable filtration while tackling pollutants and supporting cleaner air and water.
Rouneida Yasmine and her team won the third spot for their “BIOFAB” concept, a bio machine that uses cooking oil for biodiesel to create a plantable bio-fabric, supporting sustainable fashion and circular product design.
The competition’s professional training and workshops, delivered by IEMS Academy, enabled students to discover opportunities to create sustainable niche sub-sectors within industries and shape future-ready businesses and societies.
Participants brainstormed innovative ideas across various critical areas for sustainability, including air quality, food security and agriculture, sustainable marine and aquatic life, sustainability tech products for businesses, and eco-friendly materials for plastic waste management and recycling. These ideas were complemented by business models that could potentially turn waste into profitable sources.
Dr. Akinola Fadahunsi, Dean of the College of Business Administration at Ajman University, said: “Through this competition held with IEMS and BEEAH Education, we hope to inspire our students in harnessing their intellectual and entrepreneurial potential in supporting the UAE’s ambitions for sustainable development and setting an example for the student community in the region and across the world. Congratulations to the winners and all participants in the competition. We look forward to seeing them further develop their ideas and turn them into reality.”