Nearing the end of May, the Campus and Youth team (C&Y) decided to send myself and a SNCF scholar, Jax, to participate in the nEbO Youth Entrepreneurship Symposium (YES) 2016. Jax started his internship in June, hence we only met each other for the first time around 2 weeks before the symposium. Within these 2 weeks, we had to come up with a decent business plan to be presented during the quick pitch challenge.

As we were brainstorming for social issues that we could address, I unexpectedly discovered how little I knew what the society needs. Sure, I know some common social challenges: ageing population, food wastage, declining hawker heritage. But my knowledge of them was certainly not extensive (what steps have been taken to mitigate the impacts, what do the stakeholders really need). For example, I did not know about the Silver Support Scheme until I googled the current measures for ageing population. This displaces my complacency of thinking that I know what society needs and really inspired me to do more ground-sensing next Semester.

Fortunately, my colleague from C&Y team was there to guide us. He raised important questions pertinent to the feasibility of our business. We are really thankful for the hours he spent sitting through our brainstorming sessions amidst his work.

Though we did not get into finals, it was a great experience as we got to listen to many young entrepreneurs’ inspiring stories and wise advice. We also had a pleasant surprise to end the symposium: we won the Best Pitch Award!