Destined for Success: Rahul Barwani
Nov 19, 2010
Some people are motivated by success and thrive on the development of their own skills and destiny; Rahul Barwani is one such individual who has found his calling as a young entrepreneur.
As the winner of the 2010 Global Entrepreneurship Challenge, the 22-year-old is headed in the right direction for a bright future.
Rahul was crowned the winner at Wednesday’s Good Morning 2020 conference in Sweden for his response to the GEC question – “What can be done to increase the number and impact of young entrepreneurs in your country?”
Rahul’s response ‘Break the Stigma of Xenophobia in the US’ highlights the fact that visiting students to the US predominantly return to their home country after their studies because of the US’ tight laws and regulations on immigration.
“The major hindrance to innovation and entrepreneurship in the U.S. can be attributed to the xenophobic policies of the government. In the past decades, it has become increasingly difficult to attain permanent resident status in the country and the inability to attain this status is driving away a variety of intelligent entrepreneurs,” Rahul says in his entry.
Rahul says increasing the number of immigrants into the US will create more “diversity” in the country’s residents.
“Innovation flourishes in an environment with a variety of perspectives and mindsets from talented individuals and success is highly dependent upon the intersection of these ideas.
“To increase the number and impact of its entrepreneurs, the US must open its borders and encourage these educated individuals to stay and pursue ventures in an inviting economy.”
Rahul received 223 votes for his entry from like-minded individuals and figureheads. Rahul won a trip to Sweden to attend the Startup Day conference in 2011.
The GEC challenge provides an avenue to “increase communication channels and access for young entrepreneurs worldwide”, Rahul said.
“It is evident that entrepreneurship is on the rise but we are still behind on allowing talented individuals to communicate worldwide. Competitions like GEC work to combat this barrier. I was competing against students from almost every continent representing a variety of countries. There needs to be more opportunities like these available to young entrepreneurs.”
Rahul’s entrepreneurial endeavours were moulded during his earlier years of study, attending UC Berkeley to attain a BS in Mechanical Engineering, as well as a minor in Music and a Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Technology. He is currently working on his MS in Mechanical Engineering at the University of California with a focus on Design and Manufacturing.
“With the desired career of an entrepreneur in mind, my career positions have been quite far-reaching. My most current position is with the Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology as a student liaison. I handle relations with a variety of entrepreneurs, VCs and CEOs/founders of companies mainly in the Bay Area / Silicon Valley,” Rahul says.
“Aside from these jobs, I am also pursuing a couple of entrepreneurial ventures of my own – the most notable being one in designing modular solar power systems.”
Rahul lists entrepreneurship, innovation, human centered design and clean-tech as his major interests and claims his motivations are “more of an emotion or reaction – the look on a person’s face when they encounter a new technology or process is priceless – as an entrepreneur, I strive to put out products and ideas that stimulate this feeling of amazement.”
A career in Human Centered Design is on the horizon for Rahul, before personal pursuits of entrepreneurship and academia.
“I would like to start my career working with a company involved in Human Centered Design where I can utilise my creative skills to come up with innovative solutions to complex problems. This position will allow me to expose myself to a variety of industries where I can learn about the types of problems that arise and the gaps in technology,” Rahul said.
“After this, I would like to pursue the life of an entrepreneur and work on my own ventures. The main fields that I would like to tackle are Clean-tech and Remote Healthcare as I view these issues as being global problems that affect every individual.”
Rahul said heplans to eventually return to academia and teach at college and university institutes to educate young minds.
His advice to budding entrepreneurs and forward thinkers who have not taken the first step forward is to take risks and don’t be scared of failure.
“If you have a team you trust and an idea you believe in, there is no reason to not give it your all. I have seen many young entrepreneurs who begin to pursue ventures and back out when it comes time to make that commitment and I believe this is because they only see two potential outcomes: success or failure. We need to stress the importance of the learning process and steer young entrepreneurs away from the mindset.”
The Global Entrepreneurship Challenge celebrates the spirit of entrepreneurship. GEW and the Kauffman Foundation partnered with Studentcompetitions.com to organize the global competition for students, celebrating the spirit of entrepreneurship. The purpose of the competition is to reward a bright student and to raise awareness of GEW. The challenge is also an ample opportunity for a student to get international recognition for his or her ideas. Over 300 entries were posted on the competition’s website at http://www.globalentrepreneurshipchallenge.com/