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NGO connecting young adults to philanthropy wins business plan competition

“Citizens of the World,” a concept developed and pitched by Lucas Suero ’26, received the $25,000 first place prize in the 13th annual Cornell Hospitality Business Plan Competition on April 21. Hosted by Pillsbury Institute for Hospitality Entrepreneurship (PIHE) at the Cornell Peter and Stephanie Nolan School of Hotel Administration, the annual competition is open to all Cornell students and involves several elimination rounds. 

“Our mission is to make a difference, one young adult at a time,” Suero said during his final presentation to judges and attendees of Hotel Ezra Cornell 98. “Citizens of the World is a nonprofit designed to introduce young adults to a life of philanthropy. We sponsor travel to communities worldwide, allowing individuals to find their passion and create real, lasting change.”

Linda Canina, academic codirector of PIHE and Georges C. and Marian St. Laurent Professor in Applied Business Management, said that the competition offers students a chance for experiential learning with strong support from university and industry leaders. Since the pandemic, she has seen changes in the types of business plans submitted. “Previously, there were a lot of pitches for new restaurants or hotels. Now we’re seeing more ideas aimed at solving issues affecting the industry and the world.”

To read the entire story, visit the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business website.

Alison Fromme is a communications writer in the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business.





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