A team from National Taiwan University (NTU) is in the UK with 30 teams from around the world to compete in this year’s Hult Prize Challenge, with the top prize being a US$1 million start-up fund.
NTU’s “interWellness” team — consisting of students Joyce Chen (陳敏而), Sandy Tsai (蔡岑珊) and Lin Fang-ju (林芳如) — won a regional challenge in April to represent Taiwan at the competition.
The Hult Prize Challenge is an annual competition that crowd-sources ideas from university students to solve a pressing social issue.
Photo courtesy of Joyce Chen
With the theme of “Food for Good,” the goal of this year’s challenge is to create jobs, stimulate economies, reimagine supply chains and improve outcomes for 10 million people by 2030, the organizers said.
The team is using the challenge as an important learning opportunity and a chance to do things that are “meaningful and impactful” for the world, said Chen, a second-generation Taiwanese-American.
Chen said that interWellness is a platform that enlists the help of nutritionists and chefs to offer diet-friendly meals to people with chronic kidney disease.
After repeatedly updating their business model, the team registered interWellness as a company in Taipei and opened for business a week ago, Chen added.
The team is one of 30 that qualified to participate in the Hult Prize this year after 30,000 teams participated in the preliminary round.
The 30 teams are in the UK, participating in a five-week global accelerator program. At the end, only six teams will move on to the finals, with the winning team to receive US$1 million in seed capital next month.
During the accelerator program, the 30 teams are being housed at an English castle, Chen said.
As well as preparing for the challenge, the team has made trademark Taiwanese snacks — pineapple cakes and cream puffs — to give to the other teams and promote Taiwanese culture, she said.
Chen said that her Taiwanese parents raised her in Fremont, California, but that she came to Taiwan to study at NTU four years ago.
The decision was “one of the best decisions I ever made,” she said, adding that it also improved her Chinese-language skills.
“Now I can read books in Chinese, and be closer to my friends and relatives in Taiwan,” she said.
RISK FACTORS: ‘We hope people can cooperate and endure it ... it is possibly the very important last mile,’ Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung said Taiwan’s COVID-19 restrictions and mask regulations are to remain the same next month, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday. The center reported 42,112 new local COVID-19 cases and 85 deaths, saying that the number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients has dropped to a new low this month. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the CECC, said that the center is keeping COVID-19 restrictions and mask regulations the same due to the local virus situation, and an increase in the number of imported cases of the new Omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5 of SARS-CoV-2, among other risk factors. Easing
TRAVEL CONFERENCE: Representatives from the two countries exchanged views on how to increase tourist numbers, with one identifying individual travel as a trend Taiwan and South Korea aim to increase the number of tourists traveling between the two countries to 3 million, government and tourism industry representatives said at a conference in Hsinchu City yesterday. The annual event was attended by Deputy Minister of Transportation and Communications Chen Yen-po (陳彥伯); Tourism Bureau Director-General Chang Shi-chung (張錫聰); Taiwan Visitors Association chairwoman Yeh Chu-lan (葉菊蘭); South Korean Representative to Taiwan Chung Byung-won; Yoon Ji-sook, an official at the South Korean Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism; and Korea Association of Travel Agents chairman Oh Chang-hee. Global tourism is expected to soon rebound to between 55 and
DAMAGE CONTROL: The KMT in a statement called the Taiwan Strait ‘international waters,’ after Alexander Huang said China had the right to claim it as internal waters Lawmakers and experts yesterday accused the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) envoy to the US Alexander Huang (黃介正) of acting as China’s stooge, after he said that Beijing has the right to claim waters beyond its maritime territory as its exclusive economic zone and that the US has no legal basis to assert that the Taiwan Strait is an “international waterway.” Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Wang Ting-yu (王定宇) said in an online post that most of the world considers the Strait an international waterway, adding that this is important for safeguarding Taiwan. “We have seen US warships transiting through the Taiwan Strait.
The Taichung District Court yesterday sentenced to nine years in prison an unlicensed judo coach who caused the death of a seven-year-old student after slamming him onto the ground more than a dozen times. In its decision against the coach, a man surnamed Ho (何), the court cited his lack of remorse for using excessive force against an inadequately trained child and his failure to reconcile with the parents for his role in their son’s death. Speaking on behalf of the boy’s mother, Taichung City Councilor Jacky Chen (陳清龍) said the family would appeal to a higher court. Prosecutors said that Ho on