A 19-year-old student from Ilford has been crowned as the winner of Samsung’s national competition Solve for Tomorrow. 

The competition aims to find, fuel and celebrate young people who have an idea for how technology could be used to solve some of society’s biggest issues.

Ramneek Kaur Ahluwalia, who herself is visually impaired, developed MyVision, a tech-forward mobility aid that allows users to navigate their surroundings via Ai, LiDAR and GPS technology. The ground-breaking mobile device was created as an advancement of the white cane.

Ramneek has devoted her life and career to helping the visually impaired, and people suffering from other disabilities, further their education and career opportunities. She has spoken about her cause to the All Parliament Group as well as volunteering at the Thomas Pocklington Trust, a national charity which supports blind and partially sighted people with a focus on Education, Employment and Engagement.

Samsung’s Solve for Tomorrow Competition is in its second year in the UK and asks young people between the ages of 16-25 to submit their ideas spanning four key themes including sustainability, social isolation, education and diversity, equity & inclusion.

Delivered in partnership with Digital Catapult, the UK authority on advanced digital technology, the competition’s participants take part in an intensive programme from March to June, consisting of workshops with Technologists and Design Thinking experts. They are also matched with a Samsung mentor as they develop their idea further in preparation to pitch in front of a judging panel in the final.

Applications for the competition opened in November 2021 with over 450 young people entering from across the country.

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Winner Ramneek is also a consultant for Stemettes Youth Brand Accessibility which aims to give opportunity for girls, young women and non-binary young people to gain experience supporting a charity and working towards STEM.

The Solve for Tomorrow 2022 final took place on 27th June at Samsung KX in London and saw the team pitch their idea against four other finalists to a panel of expert judges including Camille Hammerer Head of Trend & Future Insights Samsung Design Europe, Conor Pierce Corporate VP of IT & Mobile Samsung Electronics UK & Ireland, and Kirsty Coates Operations Director Social Tech Trust.

Ramneek is the second to win the £10,000 cash prize in the UK with MyVision and now joins an exclusive network of Solve for Tomorrow winners globally. MyVision will also benefit from an additional six-months of mentorship from the Solve for Tomorrow team at Samsung and Digital Catapult to continue working on the development of their project.

Ramneek was led by mentor Antoni Pakowski, Design Strategist, Samsung Design Europe, who said: “Solve for Tomorrow is a great initiative which aims to inspire the youth of today to help solve some of the growing concerns facing communities. 

“Working with Ramneek on her concept for MyVision has been so rewarding. Her passion for the project and helping the visually impaired community is an inspiration and I look forward to seeing what she’ll achieve over the next six months.”

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Ramneek said: “I honestly can’t believe I’ve won! More than two million people in the UK have sight loss and every day 250 people will start to lose their sight – yet we’re seriously lacking in advancements in technology for the hard of sight. 

“Throughout the competition, we’ve been able to work with incredible mentors and have learnt so much from the other finalists. I’m really looking forward to developing MyVision as a tool to help the visually impaired community navigate their lives in a simpler way.”

The five finalists for Solve for Tomorrow 2022 included:

  • Team Repair – Monthly educational activities developed to engage children with STEM and promote sustainability by repairing broken electronic gadgets.
  • AudiVision – Smart glasses with speech-to-text capabilities, designed to alleviate the challenges faced by those with hearing impairment.
  • MyVision – A ground-breaking mobile device for the visually impaired and blind. MyVision aims to make the invisible challenges, visible.
  • Chum – Chum will use educational content to make the cancer treatment journey feel less frightening, uniquely curated for young people.
  • Nestwork – The careers social network for students. Nestwork will provide an accessible community, foster peer-to-peer learning and boost diversity within the workplace.

Launched in 2010, the Solve for Tomorrow competition has seen over 1.83 million students take part from over 20 countries.