The National Science & Technology Park, in partnership with the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan, successfully hosted the highly anticipated grand finale event of the Rising Stars Startup Competition at NUST, Islamabad. This competition specifically aims to empower women and minority entrepreneurs in Pakistan, fostering innovation and entrepreneurial spirit across the nation.
#NSTP in collaboration with the @usembislamabad hosted the grand finale event of the Rising Stars Startup Competition at NUST, Islamabad. #RSSC is a startup competition to empower women and minority entrepreneurs in Pakistan. 1/6 pic.twitter.com/3CwVsI08jS— National Science & Technology Park (@nstpofficial) July 3, 2023
Comprehensive Evaluation Process Identifies 26 Exceptional Teams: After a rigorous evaluation process, the final stage of the competition showcased 26 outstanding teams, carefully selected from a pool of over 300 participants representing diverse regions of Pakistan. These teams captivated the audience with their groundbreaking ideas and demonstrated entrepreneurial prowess during the thrilling Grand Finale.
Engaging Expo Highlights Innovative Projects and Solutions: Complementing the competition, an engaging expo allowed participants to showcase their innovative projects and solutions. This interactive platform provided an opportunity for attendees to experience firsthand the cutting-edge ideas and technological advancements being developed by these aspiring entrepreneurs.
Generous Prize Pool of PKR 6 Million Recognizes Exceptional Performances: The Rising Stars Startup Competition boasted an impressive prize pool exceeding PKR 6 million, which included both seed money and laptops for the winners. The competition acknowledged four National Winners, six regional winners, and a distinguished performer, all of whom demonstrated exceptional talent and potential to drive Pakistan’s entrepreneurial landscape forward.
Diverse Finalist Representation Reflects Commitment to Inclusion: The competition’s finalist lineup comprised 23 women, two men, and one transgender person, representing a range of religious and ethnic backgrounds. This commitment to diversity and inclusivity underscores the competition’s objective of empowering underrepresented communities and fostering equal opportunities within the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Deputy Chief of Mission Highlights U.S. Commitment to Pakistani Entrepreneurship: The esteemed event was graced by the presence of Andrew Schofer, Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Pakistan, who served as the Guest of Honor. In his opening remarks, Schofer expressed pride in the U.S. Mission’s contribution to cultivating a vibrant entrepreneurship ecosystem in Pakistan. He emphasized the importance of empowering young individuals to dream big, take risks, and become the architects of positive change and job creation in the country.
Ongoing U.S. Support Acknowledged by NUST Pro-Rector: Dr. Rizwan Riaz, Pro-Rector of NUST, expressed gratitude for the ongoing collaboration between the U.S. Embassy and NUST in fostering diversity and inclusion within the entrepreneurial sector. He recognized the U.S. government’s invaluable support in nurturing entrepreneurial activities in Pakistan, which contributes significantly to the country’s long-term economic growth.
Collaboration with Draper University and Silicon Valley Experts: The “Rising Stars of Pakistan” initiative, sponsored by the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad, has been a successful collaboration between NSTP (NUST) and Draper University, based in California. Esteemed mentors from the Pakistani American community in Silicon Valley played a vital role in guiding and mentoring the emerging Pakistani founders, ensuring a comprehensive learning experience.
Program Outreach Supported by Pak Mission Society: The Pak Mission Society, acting as the Outreach Partner for the program, played a critical role in extending the program’s reach and impact across Pakistan. Their support and efforts contributed to the program’s success in reaching aspiring entrepreneurs and promoting their participation in this empowering competition.
Conclusion: The Rising Stars Startup Competition, hosted by the National Science & Technology Park in collaboration with the U.S. Embassy, marked a significant milestone in promoting entrepreneurship and innovation among women and minority entrepreneurs in Pakistan. The event not only recognized exceptional talent but also provided a platform for participants to showcase their visionary projects and solutions. With ongoing support from the U.S. Embassy and collaborations with renowned institutions, this competition is poised to inspire and empower aspiring entrepreneurs, fostering a dynamic and inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem in Pakistan.