Hult Prize

Do you want to change the world through business?

Since 2015, Maryville College has competed in the annual Hult Prize, an international contest that has been called “the Nobel Prize for Students” because of its vision to harness the intellect and creativity found on college and university campuses to address global social challenges.

Founded by the Hult International Business School and run by the Hult Prize Foundation, the prize encourages teams of three or four students to develop innovative startup enterprises to solve a specific global problem and then compete in multiple rounds over several months until a winner is announced. In addition to a $1 million prize, the winning team receives mentorship and advice from the international business community.

Currently, only Vanderbilt University and Maryville College sponsor Hult Prize competitions in Tennessee.

2018 Contest Timeline:

  • Sept. 21, 2017 – 2018 Challenge Announced
  • Oct. 1, 2017 – 2018 Application Open
  • Dec. 2, 2017 – First-round competition held at Maryville College
  • Early March 2018 – Regional competition in Boston, Mass.
  • Summer 2018 – Hult Prize Accelerator
  • September 2018 – Hult Prize Final


Meet a current student

Kalyn CarpenterKalyn Carpenter ’19
Major: Political Science
Currently: Hult Prize Campus Director

Kalyn was a member of the College’s 2017 winning team and is now directing the 2018 prize on the MC campus. In that role, she works with faculty members to recruit teams, plan informational workshops and prepare students for competition.

She believes every student should sign up for this experience. Traveling to Boston and competing regionally in March 2017 made an impact on her and her peers.

“Although we didn’t place, we were so lucky as to have the opportunity to meet with so many students from around the world and discuss our concept with some of the world’s top business and non-profit leaders,” she said. “Participating in the Hult Prize competition looks impressive on any resumé, regardless of major, but moreover, it’s an incredibly enriching and eye-opening experience to learn about a global issue and see others’ perspectives influence possible solutions.”

Previous Challengesclick or touch to open

Previous Hult Prize finalists at Maryville College

“Refugees - Reawakening Human Potential” (2017)

MC’s winning idea:  “Maiztex,” a business that manufactures tampons from corn husks. Most feminine hygiene products are not environmentally friendly, so this MC team envisioned a business that would manufacture and provide biodegradable feminine hygiene products to female refugees.

“Crowded Urban Spaces” (2016)

MC’s winning idea:  “Renew,” a business in which the residents of crowded urban areas collect plastic waste and convert it into products (clothing, bedding, etc.) made of synthetic fabric.

Supporters and Judges:click or touch to open

Maryville College Hult Prize Supporters and Judges

Chrissy Newton Brooks ’99,
Senior Director of National Accounts, DeRoyal Industries, Inc.

John Barnes,
General Manager, WestRock

Susan Edwards,
Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer, KUB

Beth Hamil,
Executive Director, Cancer Support Community of East Tennessee

Chris Ramsey ’98,
Manager of EPD Business Planning, DENSO