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Apply your academic knowledge to real-world situations in the U21/PwC Innovation Challenge 2019-2020!

McMaster PhD and Masters students (course- and research-based) have an opportunity to showcase their critical thinking skills and share their ideas with leaders in graduate career development – PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and its clients – in this online competition.

The Challenge, organized by Universitas 21 (U21) and partner PwC, allows students to respond to contemporary work-related issues (set by PwC) in a three-minute video. Videos are judged by PwC and its clients.

The Challenge question for McMaster graduate students:

How can universities help individuals gain a broader perspective on the long-term impact and consequences of their day-to-day actions on people, society and the environment? What types of jobs will an environmentally-sensitive economy need, and what is the best way to prepare students for them? 

How does the competition work?

• A preliminary adjudication will take place at McMaster and the top video(s) will be entered into the U21/PwC competition.
• All adjudication decisions are final.
• McMaster students competing in the Challenge must upload their finished videos to this MacDrive folder.
• The competition is open to current (registered) graduate students at McMaster.
• Students should review the Innovation Challenge rules on the U21 website, including the section on Intellectual Property, before filming their video and submitting. You will also find winning submissions from an earlier Innovation Challenge available for viewing.

McMaster University can submit up to four videos in the U21/PwC competition. Students should not submit videos directly to the U21/PwC competition.

Innovation Challenge Prizes

First prize

  • 7 day expenses paid trip to Dubai meeting with staff at PwC Dubai who will arrange visits to some of the innovative projects in the city
  • Career development coaching sessions with the PwC Academy
  • Access to employability skills development online courses

Runners up prizes

  • Career development coaching sessions with the PwC Academy
  • Access to employability skills development online courses

What is Universitas 21 (U21)?

U21 is a global network of research-intensive universities, focusing on collaboration and global knowledge exchange.

Review the U21 website for more about the Innovation Challenge. If you are a McMaster student with questions about the competition at McMaster, please contact