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The University of Southampton
Ocean and Earth Science, National Oceanography Centre Southampton

Southampton students win worldwide social enterprise competition

Published: 21 October 2015
Celebrations after winning Enactus

A team of students led by marine biology graduate Josh Haskell from Ocean and Earth Science have won the Enactus World Cup – a global competition aimed at inspiring students to improve the world through entrepreneurial action.

Around 60 young people (aged 18 to 22) from the University of Southampton flew to Johannesburg for the global finals to present community development projects. After making their way through several challenging rounds in the UK and beating off stiff competition from 35 other countries in the finals in Johannesburg, the team won through 70,000 students to claim the Enactus World Cup for the UK (Friday 16 October). It was an amazing achievement and many people from the University of Southampton watched them win via the live stream on the Enactus website straight from Johannesburg.

Team leader and MSci marine biology graduate, 22 year old Josh Hasdell comments: “The team and I came to the World Cup with the intention of showing the world what our team has done. We never thought we would come away with 4,000 new friends and be crowned the world champions! I’m very humbled and proud to have been able to lead the team through this unique experience.”

Enactus is a not-for-profit global organisation that works to mobilise university students to make a difference within their communities, while developing their skills to become socially responsible business leaders. Guided by university and business advisers, students run real-life projects that create economic opportunity for others. An annual series of regional and national competitions provides a platform for teams to present the results of their projects for judging.

The Enactus Southampton presentation which featured students from across the university from different disciplines, focused on their international projects based in Kenya: SanEco, which provides sanitary solutions across impoverished communities – specialising in the production of re-usable sanitary towels, natural soap, or toilets which convert waste into fertiliser; and Right Light (last year’s project and presentation), which helps provide people with solar lighting to rent out to their communities in replacement of dangerous kerosene lamps. Their enterprising project show a truly interdisciplinary approach and one that represents the many core strengths here at the University of Southampton in delivering impact with excellence in STEM.

Enactus recognised that a significant achievement of the Southampton team was their aim for their enterprises to be fully self-sustainable within the next year. They have delivered significant growth and impact over the past year, resulting in a large team, studying 30 different degree subjects from across the university, and able to develop 14 different projects. All these projects are aligned to their team’s goals of education, equality and empowerment – as part of their 2020 vision to positively impact 360,000 people.

Visual footage, event highlights and the profile of the UK team can be viewed on:

Enactus Southampton has over 200 members and you can find out more information about the society on their website:

More information about SanEco and Right Light can be found here:




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