Smart Innovation GenerationMedia Release

Smart supports young innovators with capacity-building activities

Young innovators showcased digital solutions to help their communities adapt to the new normal during the inaugural Demo Day of Smart Prepaid Innovation Generation. A total of 13 teams from the country’s leading colleges and universities presented their innovations before their peers and mentors at the virtual Demo Day to cap off their Smart Prepaid Innovation Generation journey.

Smart received 49 entries from 22 partner colleges and universities under the Smart Wireless Engineering Education Program (SWEEP). Of this number, 16 proposals impressed judges and were signed up for the pilot run of the Smart Prepaid Innovation Generation. Nine teams who have completed and submitted the requirements on time received the full P100,000 grant. While the rest of the innovators also received between P60,000 and P95,000 in financial backing for their efforts.

“Smart has been guiding our youth innovators throughout this journey with capacity-building activities. They labored hard in the middle of the pandemic so that they can further grow their solutions into workable tools that can fix problems in their areas,” said Alfredo Panlilio, president and CEO, Smart and chief revenue officer, PLDT.

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The first Smart Prepaid Innovation Generation was launched in August 2020 coinciding with the celebration of the International Youth Day. The initiative aims to harness the creativity and passion of the youth to give back to the nation. The small grants program challenges the current generation to develop technology-enabled, simple solutions to enable their communities to adapt to the challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic.

Virtual mentorship

Over the course of five months, Smart hosted seven lectures and arranged more than 70 one-on-one virtual mentorship sessions to help teams develop their spark of an idea into workable solutions. Smart was joined by 19 industry experts who served as lecturers and mentors sharing valuable real-world information during these capacity-building activities.

Smart Prepaid Innovation Generation is part of Smart’s initiatives that support the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (UNSDG) #4 on Quality Education. Digital literacy and education continue to be a flagship CSR program of Smart and its parent firm, PLDT Inc.