Securing the national win for the KPMG Ideation Challenge (KIC)

a 4 member team that won the KMPG Ideation Challenge.

Our SAF student team solved a real-world business problem related to Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) strategy.

In March of 2022, Chloe, Nathan, Britney, and Taylor, a team of first-year Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) students, brought home the University of Waterloo’s first-ever KPMG Ideation Challenge National Win! We asked them to write a blog about their experience :

This worldwide innovation challenge gave us the opportunity to create a cost-effective solution that helps an industry, economy, or organization achieve net-zero emissions. Along with an amazing time with friends and an opportunity to build a network with interdisciplinary professionals, we received a $2,000 scholarship, job interviews during spring recruitment, and gift cards.

Our idea, CarbonCoin, inspired us to take the future of sustainable businesses seriously as we spent two months researching the retail space. CarbonCoin motivated us to find a solution that would spark meaningful change in the way consumers spend. We created software that allows users to scan products to learn more about its environmental impact to encourage sustainable shopping. As a further incentive, consumers can earn points in exchange for rewards for every sustainable purchase made.

This experience was truly something special and unlike anything we had done before. We built strong friendships and great memories, all while working on something each of us was passionate about.

Day in the life of our team:

1. Wake-up - think about CarbonCoin

2. Coffee (maybe two)

3. Lecture

4. SAF Lounge

5. CarbonCoin

6. Lunch

7. Nap (preferably, in the SAF Lounge)

8. CarbonCoin

9. Study

10. Dinner

11. Post dinner mental break(down)

12. CarbonCoin

13. Study

14. Red Bull break (recommend the dragon fruit and peach flavours - Britney and Nathan)

15. CarbonCoin (most productive)

16. Some more CarbonCoin

17. Sleep and dream about CarbonCoin

Overall, case competitions are an amazing opportunity to make life-long memories and friends, gain exposure to a variety of potential career paths and explore up-to-date industry trends. There aren’t many other opportunities where students can apply what they have learned in a real-life environment and build upon their prior knowledge quite like case competitions. So, we highly encourage you to participate in at least one as a student!

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