The Global Solutions Sustainability Challenge is a virtual exchange initiative that supports career readiness in the U.S., Iraq and Jordan. Community college students from the U.S. and technical college and university students from Iraq and Jordan team up to solve global challenges facing the business sector across industries. The program improves global citizenship, strengthens problem-solving skills, and develops enduring connections, while enhancing students’ job skills through online collaboration. 

The Global Solutions Sustainability Challenge is supported by the Stevens Initiative, which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, with funding provided by the U.S. Government, and is administered by the Aspen Institute. 


The Stevens Initiative is an international effort to build global competence and career-readiness skills for young people in the United States and the Middle East and North Africa while growing and enhancing the field of virtual exchange: online, international, and collaborative learning. The Stevens Initiative is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, with funding provided by the U.S. Government, and is administered by the Aspen Institute. It is also supported by the Bezos Family Foundation and the governments of Morocco and the United Arab Emirates. For further information, please visit http://www.stevensinitiative.org/ 


IREX is an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to building a more just, prosperous, and inclusive world by empowering youth, cultivating leaders, strengthening institutions, and extending access to quality education and information. For further information, please go to: http://www.irex.org.


Contact Information Email: globalsolutions@irex.org

Cohort I finalist teams are required to submit the final report by July 30, 2020.

Congratulations Teams on winning Top Finalist Places in the Global Solutions Sustainability Challenge.  Finalist teams are eligible for award funding to develop their business concepts:

1st Place - eligible to request up to USD 2,000

2nd Place -eligible to request up to USD 1,500

3rd Place - eligible to request up to USD 1,000

Funds can be sent to one academic institution or split between both.
Funds amount might vary depending on transfer and exchange rates.

Open Grants GSSC alumni, excluding the three finalist teams, can apply for up to $1,000 USD to continue to develop and/or implement projects focused on creating sustainable solutions to community challenges. Alumni can apply for these grants in three distinct project categories: 1) continue to develop GSSC solution, 2) create a new sustainable solution or 3) conduct community outreach about the GSSC
Funds amount might vary depending on transfer and exchange rates. 

IREX has allocated funds to support the academic institutions of Global Solutions teams with technology access.

US facilitators will receive a $100 stipend to be used towards technology needs.

Participants of the Global Solutions Sustainability Challenge are invited to participate in an exclusive expert webinar series. The series launches with Jihad Kafafi from Jordan Museum. Join the webinar to hear and ask questions about sustainability related to culture and heritage.

The live webinar will occur on Tuesday, October 20, 2020

US:      12 pm to 1 pm EST
MENA:   7 pm to 8 pm

Submit here the following items:

1. Business Concept (see template)

2. Video Link

3. Three to five photos of your prototype

Required: Student participants were sent the final survey directly through SurveyGizmo. Completion of the survey by all team members is a required component of the final submission. If a student has not received the email, first check spam, then reach out to globalsolutions@irex.org.


Virtual Global Business Expo (for more information)

  • December 16, 2020 from 11:00am to 1:00pm ET / 7:00pm to 9:00pm Iraq / 6:00om - 8:00pm Jordan

Finalist Run-through: Participants identified as the top six finalists will be invited to a run-through. The run-through will allow finalists to practice the flow of the event and use the technology.

  • December 15, 2020 from 11:00am to 12:00pm ET / 7:00pm - 8:00pm Iraq / 6:00pm - 7:00pm Jordan