Kentucky Commercialization Ventures (KCV) recently sponsored 3 students from our supported institutions to attend UNITE's Camp2030 through the KCV GOAL Fund. My Doan and Alejandro Villaseñor-Lara, students from Northern Kentucky University, talk about their experiences below. Learn more about the KCV GOAL Fund here.
Sarah Roberts, UNITE 2030 Camp2030 Program Manager, noted of Kentucky's participation, "Camp 2030 is a place for all game changers, changemakers, and young people ready to make a difference. The students that joined us through KCV from across the State all represented just what it means to be a young person taking action towards a better future. During our time at our 6 day innovation lab in September, we got to see the growth of over 100 young Campers from across the world, who joined hands to create a better future for us and for the planet. Camp 2030 is game-changing for everyone that joins us, and we are so happy that our changemakers from KCV were a part of it."
About My's Camp2030 Experience
Camp 2030 was more than just your typical innovation lab—it was a dynamic space where passionate young minds from 50+ countries came together. This experience opened my eyes to a whole new way of tackling global challenges. During the six-day camping period, we dove into workshops, had discussions, and engaged in activities that brought us closer to our shared goal of making a real impact on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (#SDGs). Additionally, I believe the camping vibe added an extra layer of connection. From late-night discussions under the stars to early morning workshops, every moment was an opportunity to build authentic relationships with people from diverse backgrounds.
Engaging with the principles of human-centered design, my team and I zeroed in on SDG 4, Quality Education. We embarked on a stimulating journey, crafting a visionary project aimed at providing well-rounded, holistic education to Kenyan children. This process not only deepened my understanding of the complexities of education challenges but also highlighted the crucial role of innovative approaches in addressing them.
The grand finale, the Solutions Hub, on the last day of Camp 2030, was a game-changer. It seamlessly connected us to Global Goals Week, allowing us to actively participate in the UN General Assembly in New York City. This unique bridge between camp life and a global stage was a chance to amplify our impact and engage with the wider community working towards the SDGs.
In a nutshell, UNITE 2030 and Camp 2030 weren't just about innovation; they were about blending global collaboration, camping camaraderie, and making a real difference. I wholeheartedly recommend my fellow KY students to seize this opportunity—it's a chance to broaden your horizons, develop your skills, and actively contribute to the global push for sustainable development. A heartfelt thanks to Kentucky Commercialization Ventures for providing me with the generous support to be part of this transformative experience!
About Alejandro's Camp2030 Experience
My name is Alejandro Villaseñor-Lara, and I was one of the students sponsored by KCV to attend CAMP 2030, an initiative created to help on bringing new ideas for the United Nations SDGs where we were focused on different areas of improvement along students from all over the world with the same mindsets to improve our communities.
I learned about this opportunity thanks to my research professor Dr. Zeel Maheshwari who encouraged me to apply for the camp and helped me with the application process. In this opportunity I was able to create bonds and expand my network with like-minded individuals who focused on improvements and were looking for ways to make them a reality, I learned effective ways to bring these ideas to reality, the process for developing the solutions and effective teamwork with people from different backgrounds, cultures, and languages. It was an extremely pleasant experience that made me realize how connected we all were and how we can help each other to accomplish these goals.
These types of experiences are important to me because they allowed me to develop a stronger network, allow the flow of ideas and improvements that not only affect me at the international level but can also be brought locally. I decided to take part in the SDG 7, Affordable and Renewable Energies, because I believe a clean and easier access to electricity can improve my surroundings critically, by developing more improvements in renewable energy uses, it can decrease the energy poverty line and amplify the access to electricity on rural areas. Improvement on these goals can bring a faster development of the state and help on continuing improving other areas of struggle within the state.
Innovation in renewable energies is important as it develops new technologies and helps towards other goals, such as reducing climate change, decreasing poverty, access to basic resources for people, etc. In return it creates a better and more sustainable state capable of providing easier access to the basics needs of people and a better quality of life.
My next goal after the camp is to continue with my education to finish my undergrad in Electrical and Electronics Engineering Technology, start working in the industry of renewable energies focused on solar power. I’m looking forward to this to be sure I can start moving forward with the goal my group started during the camp and one of the energies a lot of people have a lot of hopes for is solar energy.