Seven students to present projects at Clinton Global Initiative University

Seven Geneseo students have been selected to present business projects in Miami this March as part of the Clinton Global Initiative University. There, students will compete for one of 20 $5,000 grants that will allow them to further pursue their projects.

The Clinton Global Initiative is part of the Clinton Foundation, a nonprofit company created by former President Bill Clinton, which aims to address pressing global issues. The $100,000 total grants offered in March are through another organization in the initiative called the Resolution Project.

The Geneseo students selected to participate in the Clinton Foundation’s yearly University Conference are junior Madelyn Sayed, junior Matthew McClure, senior Staci Weiss, senior Scott Chauncey, senior Matthew Dobjeleski, senior Carly Lauricella and senior Luciano Scala.

Projects include Scala’s website VisoWorld, which won him an ambassadorship grant last spring. The site is a matchmaking website for study abroad students, although he stressed that it is not a dating site.

“It is based on personal characteristics and matches you to the best study abroad program that can most empower you,” he said.

Chauncey’s project––which he worked on with Lauricella and Dobjeleski––is titled Plastofuel.

“We’re going to take plastic waste that cannot be recycled otherwise and turn it into fuel that can be used as alternative coal inside power plants,” Chauncey said. He noted that it started as 10 years of research from Alfred State University and Pennsylvania State University.

The application process for the Clinton Global Initiative was extensive, ensuring that every project admitted was what Scala described as “specific, measurable and obtainable.”

“It was asking for the project now, where the project is going to be and how it helps the community,” Chauncey said.

Geneseo is one of 69 schools admitted into the CGI University Network this year, with some schools located in London and Dubai. Twelve of the schools invited are State schools, with two of them being State University of New York Schools––the other being SUNY Westchester Community College.

Once in Miami, the students from the 61 schools will present their business ventures in the hope of being one of the 20 grant recipients.

“We also participate in workshops and meet the Clintons, Chelsea I think,” Chauncey said. “That’s going to be the best part,” Scala added.

Receiving the grant, however, won’t be easy. “There’s a separate application for the grant, which is another seven pages,” Chauncey said.

“It’s so long, it’s so much more detailed,” Scala added. He noted that it included multiple statements, a business budget plan and is directed especially at social ventures.

The announcement of the seven Geneseo students attending the CGI University in March was made on the Center for Inquiry Development and Discovery Facebook page on Jan. 8, but students found out about their acceptance over winter break.



Correction: In the Feb. 5 issue of The Lamron, the article “Seven students to present projects at Clinton Global Initiative University” stated that 69 schools were admitted into the Clinton Global Initiative. The correct number is 61 schools. Additionally, the article implied that the projects were listed in one general category. Instead, the projects had to fall into one of the five following categories: education, environment and climate change, peace and human rights, poverty alleviation and public health. According to seniors Luciano Scala and Scott Chauncey who will attend Clinton Global Initiative University, admitted students will compete for grants provided by the Resolution Project, but The Lamron has not been able to confirm that with representatives from the Clinton Global Initiative.