Culver Girls Academy sophomore Erin Thomas (Westfield, Ind.) is the winner of the 2012 China Competition, sponsored by The Ron Rubin School for the Entrepreneur. Thomas did a presentation on contemporary Chinese artist Ai Weiwei. He served as the artistic consultant on the Beijing National Stadium for the 2008 Olympics.
“The requirement for the competition was to select a successful entrepreneur or new product in China,” Thomas said of her selection. “Immediately, I thought back to an installation from the Hirshhorn Museum of Contemporary Art in Washington, D.C., that was created by Ai Weiwei. Although he is not a typical entrepreneur, I saw his accomplishments as an artist and activist to be innovative and influential enough to rank him at the top of the list.”
The China Competition is underwritten by David Filkins, president of Kemeny Overseas Products in Chicago. The competition is designed to interest Culver students in entrepreneurship in the world’s fastest growing economy, the People’s Republic of China.
Any Culver student is eligible to compete by submitting an application, along with an essay analyzing either an innovative product or service in the People’s Republic of China, or profiling a particularly daring and exciting Chinese entrepreneur. Five applicants are invited to make a formal presentation before a panel of judges.
The winner earns a $3,000 scholarship for travel to China, which Thomas plans to use to finance her Global Pathways Spring trip this year. “It will be a powerful opportunity to fully experience a country with such a large world influence,” she said.