Students create solutions to global challenges

UB's team Elevateher competes.

Three UB students—Team ElevateHer—sought to solve a significant global issue through the World’s Challenge Challenge.

At UB, being bold means helping citizens in Western New York and around the world improve their environment and community while generating economic growth. And that’s just what three UB students—Team ElevateHer—sought to accomplish through the World’s Challenge Challenge.

Team Elevateher receiving check.

UB’s Team ElevateHer members (from left) Zhasmina Tacheva (operations management), Manjusha Choorakuzil (computer science and engineering) and Ramla Qureshi (civil engineering)

The team took first place in UB’s 2018 competition and was invited to participate in the international competition of the World’s Challenge Challenge, hosted by Western University in London, Ontario. The contest pools the talents and creativity of bright students from around the world to create potential solutions to significant global issues.

This is one of the many programs made possible by UB’s Blackstone LaunchPad, a hands-on learning program supported by the Blackstone Charitable Foundation that introduces entrepreneurship as a viable career option to all UB students.

“UB attracts some of the country’s most ambitious students,” Amy Stursberg, executive director of the Blackstone Charitable Foundation, says, “and Blackstone LaunchPad will provide them with the tools they need to launch their own initiatives.”

Manjusha Choorakuzil’s


“The three of us here are all proud to be females in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), but we are sad to say that we are an exception and not a norm, so we decided to do something about it.”