Acara Challenge 2010 is up and running across 5 Indian, 7 US and 1 Mexican university. Teams have been formed and students are already visiting the field conducting research, talking to people and analyzing data that they collect.  Collaboration across borders and disciplines is happening as I write. Mentors have started talking to teams across universities and their interactions will probably result in great outputs. All of this is not possible without the support of our Student Program Managers. I am using this opportunity to introduce our India Program Managers at our five universities for the 2010 Acara Challenge.

First goes Vikash Singh from Somaiya Institute of Management Science and Research in Mumbai. Vikash was a participant in the Acara Challenge 2009 and was also an Acara Corps 2010 Fellow. Vikash is currently an MBA student pursuing studies in International Business and Marketing. Vikash is an alumnus of Bangalore Institute of Technology and has over 3 years of experience in the IT industry. His interests include social entrepreneurship, business networking and development. He is a budding entrepreneur and is working on his social venture ‘Tathatsu’ focused on rural ecommerce and agri-tourism. Previously, Vikash has alo started an adventure sports group called The Offroaders and is planning a commercial venture in that space.


Neha Bhagat is our PM at TERI University where she is pursuing an MBA in Business Sustainability.  She has worked on community development programs in the slums of Delhi and has a Masters Degree in Environmental Management.




Next goes Maninder Pal Singh Thind, our Program Manager at IIT Roorkee. Maninder is an undergrad studying Civil Engineering and has also been an Acara Challenge participant and Acara Corps Fellow. He is actively involved in SIIRD (Students Initiative for Integrated Rural Development) at IITR. Maninder is working on a solar energy initiative in village Charba near Roorkee (also the Acara Challenge local community spot) to bring power to local schools. He was one among six young leaders invited to present his work at the Global AIESEC International Congress at ISB, Hyderabad in 2010.


Next comes Abhishek Jain, Acara Student Program Manager, at VIT in Vellore. Abhishek is the Co-ordinator of Center for Social and Entrepreneurship Development (CSED) at VIT and is the co-founder of ‘Volunteer for Manipal’.




Anu Jha is Acara’s PM at KIIT in Bhubhaneshwar where she is pursuing a Masters in Biotechnology. Anu Jha has always been an active member of NSS and her interests include event management, social service and scientific research.