Brian Mushakwe (pictured), from Chinhoyi University of Technology in Zimbabwe, recently won the International University Challenge at the IMEX-MPI-MCI Future Leaders Forum.
The International University Challenge is part of the IMEX-MPI-MCI Future Leaders Forum, a unique and free opportunity open to final year students of hospitality, event or tourism management courses. It offers insight into the meetings industry, creating links with inspirational industry experts and fellow students. The Forum took place online for the first time this year, as part of IMEX’s new virtual experience, PlanetIMEX.
Mushakwe caught the judges’ attention with his presentation ‘The Events Hotspot Conference’ which showcased his home country of Zimbabwe through speakers, diverse venues, locally sourced food and community involvement, and with great use of technology.
Mushakwe also offered a young planner’s perspective on how the current crisis has shaped the sector.
He said: “I think the Covid-19 crisis has shown how agile business event professionals – and the next generation of planners – can be. We’re making creative and clever use of technological innovations to deliver engaging hybrid events that provide yet another valuable way to connect and share experiences.”
His presentation to the judges, who included Miranda Van Bruck, creative director of The Content Studio and Rebecca Johnson, sustainability consultant at the Global Destination Sustainability Index, was part of a virtual version of the International University Challenge, usually held live at IMEX in Frankfurt.
Shortlisted students from around the world submitted video presentations to accompany their written proposals. Mushakwe and four other finalists are now set to attend IMEX in Frankfurt next year, and Mushakwe will receive his award at the show’s Gala dinner.
Since its launch in 2003, over 8,000 students have attended the Forum, which is run in partnership with MPI (Meeting Professionals International) and global meetings and events company MCI.