Award-winning Greenovate Awards just got bigger
The Greenovate Awards Programme is taking environmental innovation even further this year by introducing a new category for engineering students.
The Greenovate Awards Programme, founded by Growthpoint Properties with the Green Building Council South Africa (GBCSA), sets students of the built environment on a quest to find more sustainable ways of living. It stimulates green building thinking and rewards excellence in its application.
A first of its kind in South Africa, the Universities of Cape Town, the Witwatersrand and Pretoria piloted the programme in 2015 in the property studies and construction faculties. Last year, students at University of Free State and Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University joined.
This year, the Greenovate Awards programme has been extended to create a new category to include students from engineering. The competition is now open to students of the electric, electronic, mechanical, and civil engineering fields.
Eight South Africa universities are contesting the Greenovate Awards this year after Stellenbosch University and the University of the North West engineering faculties joined.
Head of Sustainability at Growthpoint, Werner van Antwerpen, says: “It is exciting to see South Africa’s future industry leaders showcase their understanding of the importance of preserving our natural environment as they address sustainability in our urban fabric. Greenovate has already generated significant and meaningful impacts on our environment today, but also for tomorrow.”
So, how does the Greenovate Awards Programme work? The challenge is set for final-year and honours university students to come up with ideas that result in a research project that promotes a more sustainable built environment.
Round one of the competition is internal. Each university’s panel will select the top two projects submitted by individual students or groups. In the second round, students from each university’s two top projects interact with professional mentors before competing in front of judges.
Then, the finalist from each university will present their ideas to an external judging panel of industry experts. The last round takes place in November, after university exams.
There’s R110,000 overall in prizes. The winning team from each of the two streams – property and construction studies, and engineering – will take home R30,000. The winners will also present their research to leading built environment professionals at the annual GBCSA Green Building Convention the following year. Second and third prizes for both streams are R15,000 and R10,000 respectively, and tickets to the GBCSA Convention.
“We see the Greenovate Programme as a source for potential Growthpoint graduates and internships, as well as opening up doors to many of the other business leaders attending the awards dinner and the GBCSA Convention. It supports Growthpoint’s recruitment of students who have a good understanding of sustainability, which is a priority for us,” says Van Antwerpen.