Through the Impact Lab course, you can gain hands-on experience in a whole range of social business areas and with different organisations, ranging from established charities and enterprises, pre-incorporated ventures, as well as creating social enterprises from scratch.
WHO CAN APPLY
Full-time & exchange* students from any faculty of the University of Hong Kong (HKU)
* there is no difference in the application process for the exchange students
All work can be done remotely and it does not matter if the student is in Hong Kong or overseas. The course follows all the preventive measures as set by The University of Hong Kong.
SELECTION & ENROLLMENT
Students cannot add the course on Moodle by themselves but need to apply by sending their CV & Motivation Letter through an application form linked on this page and receive an offer from the Impact Lab Partner company first. The selection of students is done directly by a social enterprise(s) to which the student applies.
Once the student is offered a placement by a company s/he will receive a link to register for the course. After the student finishes registering, the information is sent to the faculty administration for enrollment which can take a couple of days or weeks (e.g. in case that student has a credit overload issue or provided wrong student ID/name/faculty it can take longer).
TIMELINE FOR THE SPRING SEMESTER 2021
Application period: 4 Jan - 14 Jan*
Selection period: 4 Jan - 17 Jan (enrollment to be completed by 18 Jan)
Placement duration: 18 Jan - 30 Apr
Course Onboarding Webinar: 27 Jan (6:00pm HK Time)
IMPACT LAB SUMMER SEMESTER 2021 - SUMMER SEMESTER IS YET TO BE CONFIRMED
Application period: 01 Mar - 14 Mar*
Selection period: 01 Mar - 21 Mar
Placement duration: 1 Jun - 15 Aug
Course Briefing: 10 Mar (6:00pm)
Course Onboarding: May
* If the deadline passed but you still want to be part of the course, send us an email with your resume and motivation letter and we will get back to you if there are any spots available. There will be no possibility to join the course after the add/drop period.
Please, do not apply to unreasonably many partner companies. Doing so shows a lack of etiquette and dedication.
Please be specific in your cover letter. It is easy for a manager to spot the difference between a generic cover letter being copy-pasted to several partner companies versus a genuine specific cover letter. Provide clear information on why you are interested in the specific company and role - and why you are qualified for the job. We are all eager to support your personal development, so also help us understand your career aspirations (e.g., tell us about where you hope to be / what you hope to do 5 years from now).
For credit overload and administrative questions, please contact your faculty
If you are an exchange student, check whether you can apply with your home university (we can provide a letter of support if needed - please send us a request if that is the case stating what is your university requiring)
Add/drop period for courses ends on 01 Feb 2021 (spring) / 22 Jun 2021 (summer)
For more information about the course and the application process, see the "About the Course" page
Soap Cycling (Full)
Asia's first and largest soap recycling charity. Soap Cycling is a charity that works with the hospitality industry to collect, process, and distribute lightly used soap bars and bottled amenities. These life-saving items are then distributed to disadvantaged communities around the world, particularly Asia.
Soap Cycling combines its environmental mission to reduce waste and promote recycling with a strong social focus. New programs focus on creating employment opportunities for disadvantaged groups in Hong Kong, focussing on increasing the local impact.
Soap Cycling offers a great combination of allowing students to take over the regular operations and training their entrepreneurial sense when developing new projects.
Students who are motivated and interested in building something real and long-lasting are highly desired.
Find the Opportunities, please click here!
Address your applications to Charlotte Breyer (Director).
Weava is a fast-growing local HKU EdTech startup that focuses on improving the productivity of students, professors and academic staff using technology. With our popular Google Chrome extension and mobile app users can highlight, organize, and create their research documents all in one place — and we have lots of plans for further improvement! We now have 400,000+ registered users from 1,000+ educational institutions in 50+ countries using our tool to stay productive online.
Marketing & Sales (digital marketing, partnerships, corporate communication)
Customer Support & Bus Dev (business analytics, user research, support handling)
Software QA Engineering (software development, product testing, automation)
Software Angular Programmer (software development, coding)
Accounting & admin (helping us keep our stuff together!)
Designs (UI/UX design, graphic design, videos)
Check out our internship opportunities in detail here!
Address your applications to Jon Pedersen (Director).
Migrasia Global Solutions (Full)
Migrasia is an incubator that fosters and incubates solutions to problems relating to the migration of peoples, particularly in Asia. Migrasia utilizes a multi-faceted approach to tackle the major problems associated with migration by funding and is dedicated to promoting an ethical recruitment process for migrant workers via advocacy, research, journalism, and education.
Migrasia also has a technology team focused on building technology solutions, websites, and analysing large data sets. If you are interested in website development, big data, scraping, machine learning, or automation please apply now.
Students who join Migrasia will have the opportunity to gain real-life experience working in an early-stage startup and will have the ability to take on significant responsibility and projects talking with real customers (employment agencies, employers, and governments).
Address your applications to Taylor Amarel (General Manager).
Foundation for Shared Impact
Foundation for Shared Impact (FSI) is a foundation aimed at fostering social innovation and entrepreneurship. It is an exciting new venture that will, among others, create unique fundraising events and programs tailored for social enterprises, work on social business incubator aspects, develop unique overseas experiential programs, and more.
In FSI, you will be able to work on a wide range of tasks, including marketing, social media management, fundraising, consulting, and organizing events, and interact with entrepreneurs and professionals from different backgrounds — both from the social and professional sector.
If you are willing to work in a dynamic environment, ready to take up challenges, and eager to join an energetic team, then FSI will be your choice. It is especially suitable for highly entrepreneurial and proactive students who excel at taking an idea and bringing it to life.
Communications & Marketing (generating social media content and website content, assisting with research for article and newsletter write-up, content marketing etc." in the brackets immediately following)
Business support and capacity-building (we'll specifically create a full-fledged business solution for a selected charity, including consulting and developing a state-of-the-art database and CRM solution. If you want to have hands-on and direct experience in making a charity excel their reach, impact and efficiency - then this is your choice).
Community Connections (match-making program between professionals at major firms in HK and social impact organizations)
For Business Support, address your applications to Jon Pedersen (Director). For Communications & Marketing, address your applications to Tung Ching Li (Communications Manager). For Community Connections, address your applications to Anna Kum (Community Connections Manager).
Addressing the complex issue of sustainability in the hospitality industry is not something that can be achieved in isolation. In order to advance sustainability programmes and practices across the entire sector, there needs to be a collaboration, co-operation and a shared commitment.
This is where GREEN Hospitality comes in.
We are a platform dedicated to facilitating connections and promoting dialogues between all related industries in the hospitality sector. In doing so, we help them to achieve their sustainability goals and become a catalyst for positive change.
As such, we are an organisation that is defined by its members. We are not advocacy, but an alliance of advocates. A network of individuals and companies that share similar sustainability goals and who realise that achieving those goals is easier when you partner with individuals and companies with similar passions and areas of expertise.
More than anything though, we are problem solvers. Whether through highlighting issues, sharing ideas or supporting innovative technologies, we are always focused firmly on being able to expedite actionable solutions.
We believe in change for good. And we believe that a knowledgeable and collaborative hospitality industry can be the driver of this change.
Check out our placement opportunities here!
Address your applications, mentioning the position(s) you are interested in, to Lucia Loposova (Director).
EmpowerU’s mission is to provide high-quality education to those on the margins, so they can find their voice and use it to create a better future.
By combining technology, community, and award-winning educators, we have created a unique impact-based learning pedagogy that aims to empower ethnic minority students and migrant domestic workers to create a generation of leaders who'll usher in sustainable social impact in their communities.
Learn and engage with some of the over 380,000 domestic workers in Hong Kong. Make your university life more productive in helping these workers, understand their culture and share your knowledge with them through direct interaction. Here is your unique chance!
HKU students will embark on a journey to experience leadership through an administrative managerial role in the creation and management of different educational programs and activities for domestic workers and ethnic minorities. Students will help advocate and promote cultural understanding, inclusion, and respect for these populations in Hong Kong.
Placement opportunities with EmpowerU can be found here!
Address your applications to Bradley Aaron (Program Director).
24 Hour Race
The 24 Hour Race is Asia's largest youth-led endurance challenge and joins young people together in the fight against Slavery. Sponsored for every lap they run, our high school students raise funds for anti-trafficking initiatives in an incredible 24 Hour relay race. It is a student-led movement from the very beginning. Since 2010, we have expanded from Hong Kong to Kuala Lumpur, Singapore and Seoul and had tens of thousands of students run in our races.
We prefer placing interns in existing projects based on their skills / interest. Some of the major projects we are working:
Event management - helping us with logistics and preparation for 5-6 different race options (normal, capped, shortened, satellite, virtual)
Address your applications to Daniel Hestevold (COO).
Good Financial (Full)
Good Financial exists to serve the financial needs of migrant workers.
We are re-thinking, re-designing, and re-inventing financial services for migrant workers. Our primary focus right now is to provide the best and most ethical loan service on the market.
We’re tackling a broken, exploitative industry and aspire to save our customers at least HK$100 million by reducing the interest rates.
We are searching for talented generalists who can get stuff done to a high-level of execution!
Address your applications to Malcolm Loudon (Head of Relationship Management).
Hollo is one of the most up and coming Mental Healthcare related start-ups in Hong Kong. By enabling our users to assess and track their own mental health and equipping them with the tools and professional help, Hollo has begun to revolutionize the well-being sector for the better.
After gaining some traction as World Champions of Microsoft's Imagine Cup 2020, their technology used to screen mental health has caught the attention of international leaders in the industry.
With a focus in the NGO sector and a scope to expand into insurance and corporate spaces, the Hollo experience is definitely dynamic and fast-paced. Unlike other companies, the founder's will be right there with you to learn and experience a start-up's lifestyle.
We're looking for student's who have a passion for social good in business settings. As young founders, we have a lot to learn and hope that our interns and staff can take the reigns of their respective fields and hold more autonomy than usual in their decisions for the company.
Most of the work will focus surrounding our nearby scale options involving Insurtech space, Corporate wellness partnerships, marketing and content writing for our brand, as well as being very hands-on with our current NGO partners and customers.
Address your applications to Cameron van Breda (Co-Founder & CEO).
Carbonbase is an HK-based climate change data solution that helps individuals and corporations to understand their environmental footprint, reduce CO2 emissions, and co-create a better planet together. Our vision is to help Hong Kong reach its Carbon Neutral by 2050 goal by helping connect and reward businesses and individuals for taking climate action.
Our first product is a reward-backed carbon footprint calculator and offset engine, allowing individuals and corporates to calculate their footprint, easily offset it to become carbon neutral, with records of commitment recorded on the blockchain. We are also building AI tools to facilitate a more efficient and transparent climate project MRV. By leveraging technology for good, our ultimate goal is to drive sustainable investment and responsible consumption to stop climate change.
- Research and Consulting
- In this role you will be able to discover how it is to be a consultant and conduct business development in real life, working closely with a climate change technology startup. The primary focus will be on research and content creation, which will involve meetings with the core management team at Carbonbase. This position will be great for you if you are considering a career in communications, consulting and climate change.
- Software Engineering
- In this role, you will be able to join a fast-pace environmental tech startup, building solutions against Climate Change! You will be working with our product team and building features end-to-end, contributing ideas to new products and features and then build the full range of code to implement them. You will also be involved in Carbonbase’s corporate projects.
For more information regarding the roles and the company, click here.
Address your applications to Karen Wang (HR).
At Livin Farms our mission is to empower people to start a revolution from their kitchen. We want to educate our customers on WHY it is so important to rethink how we consume and dispose of food. We want to prove that big changes start with small gestures. As small as a mealworm 🐛!
Don't be fooled, they aren't just tiny, cute, wriggly creatures: they can do some proper magic!
Our product, the Hive Explorer, educates people about mealworm farming and how it enables us to produce more sustainable proteins, to recycle food waste and to produce sustainable and quality fertiliser. All in the small space of our kitchen.
At Livinfarms, you will join a small and dynamic team, take ownership of important projects and learn about the future of foods.
Marketing - Social Media: Number of positions: 1
As a marketing student intern, you will be responsible to plan, design and implement our social media strategy. This may include social media advertising (e.g. Facebook and Instagram Ads). Under the guidance of the Livin Farms team, you will learn how to plan, implement and evaluate marketing strategies based on set ambitious targets.
Sales - Sales Development: Number of Positions: 1 (full)
As a sales development student intern, you will learn, under the mentoring of the Livin Farms team, how to generate sales leads and initiate negotiation conversations. The sales development internship role is related to Livin Farms educational offering. To learn more, see here:
More details here!
Address your applications to Cristina Michelini (Chief Operating Officer APAC).
Box of Hope (Full)
Box of Hope is a renown annual charity project in Hong Kong aimed at providing useful/educational gifts to underprivileged children in Hong Kong & Asia donated by Hong Kong school children and local organisations. You fill old shoe boxes with NEW interesting and EDUCATIONAL gifts at home and drop them off at a collection point. The boxes are then collected and delivered directly to the children in need. Last year over 35,000 boxes were distributed.
Interns will get to work on exciting elements such as helping improve organisational structure and a unique overhaul of our existing database - which will have a tremendous positive impact on our future operations. Overall, this is a unique opportunity to manage important processes and projects in an impactful charity.
Please also note that work hours are generally flexible throughout the placement.
Direct your applications to Sian Taylor (Director).
bakbamboo - Not Taking Students This Semester
Consultancy, sustainability services and supplier of customised, eco-friendly products at a wholesale level to hotels, resorts, aviation and beyond. Our products are carefully selected based on their environmental impact, with the ultimate goal to assist in the reduction of single-use plastics in these industries.
Our primary goal is to cater to large hotels and other accommodation venues across the Asia Pacific and beyond. We provide bamboo fibre bathroom amenities including toothbrushes, combs, hairbrushes, razors, earbuds, reusable make-up pads and other sustainable options (e.g. fluoride dent tabs) presented in our beautifully designed recyclable packaging complete with company logo customisation.
Strategy Development (short-term & long-term)
Assistance with KPIs for the company for the next 12 months with a focus on ESG criteria
Business Development activities with HK hotels and the sustainability sector
New Product Development, design and enhancement, working with the team to solve client solutions and make hotel guest products more sustainable and eco-friendly
Building Relationships and partnering up with local knowledge events/workshops
Assisting in the production of a company introduction video
Filling Application forms HK Green Certifications
Experience with office PA duties is an advantage to applying students
Address your applications to Naveet McMahon (Co-Founder).
Green Queen (Full)
From a tiny green living blog that went live in 2011, Green Queen is today Asia’s leading English-language impact media platform. Our award-winning magazine reaches hundreds of thousands of readers across the region (and even beyond) who are thirsty for trusted, well-researched and engaging sustainability content.
Green Queen’s multi-channel platform is a trusted brand across Asia and includes:
i) Our award-winning online magazine, ii) community events, iii) the world’s first Zero Waste & Vegan Recipe Meal Plan, iv) weekly newsletters, v) Green Queen BIZ, the first B2B community dedicated to accelerating impact to sustainable SDG-focused business solutions across all industry verticals, and vi) A Zero Waste Journey: LIVE On Air Podcast.
Corporate Sustainability Research Intern
Number of Positions: 2
In this role, you will be working on a project assessing companies in the sustainability space. The goal of the project is to ensure a holistic, well-rounded survey of the participating companies when it comes to their sustainability efforts. The survey will be based on the United Nations Sustainable Developments Goals.
Sustainability Performance Diagnostics - conduct assessment of selected companies
Relationship Building - engage with target companies to build lasting relationships
More details here!
Address your applications to Aigul Safiullina (Head Green Queen BIZ).
Wise at Work - Not Taking Students This Semester
Wise at Work is a platform that re-imagines the potential of a rapidly ageing world through employment, training and consulting.
Not taking interns this semester.
Address your applications to Priyanka Gothi (Founder & CEO).
Twopresents - Not Taking Students This Semester
Established in 2013, Twopresents is an award-winning social enterprise that combines an online invitation platform with a charitable gift solution. Party hosts can use the platform to send out personally customised party invitations, where guests are invited to contribute money online towards a special gift and the celebrant’s chosen charity. Twopresents promotes the concept of sharing and giving through celebrations, making them more meaningful. We focus on raising social awareness, reducing gift waste, teaching children good values and educating them on social and environmental responsibility. We work with 35+ charities, have 15'000+ users and have raised more than HK$ 9 million for charities and great gifts.
Not taking interns this semester.
Address your applications to Shirin Staerkle (Co-Founder).
Start a social enterprise
For exceptionally entrepreneurial and independent students, separate projects dealing with brand new social enterprise ideas may be possible.
If interested, please email email@example.com
HIATUS PARTNER COMPANIES
The following partner companies/projects are currently put on hold (not seeking interns). However, should you have a burning desire to revitalize or be a part of these entities then you may express your interest and you might get the chance to do so.
Project Evergreen (hiatus - not in operation)
Evergreen is a think tank focusing on all things “green,” with a particular emphasis on reducing Hong Kong’s carbon footprint by making energy efficient technologies more accessible. This is possible through an innovative combination of financial modeling and environmental consultation.
Evergreen’s primary service offering is a Green Revolving Fund (GRF). Our GRF will provide low
interest loans to cover the up-front capital costs needed to install energy efficient technologies.
Property owners then repay the loans using the cost savings from lower utility bills.
One Degree Tours (hiatus)
One Degree is a social venture organization with the purpose to alleviate poverty of the lower class communities in locations where tourists are travelling to. Many of these communities have wealth of natural attractions and tourism is a channel to inject currency into these economies, circulating to improve living standards across their communities.
852 Designs/HKU Apparel
852 Designs is a student-run social enterprise that offers creative students a chance to design and sell apparel and merchandise for the HKU community (and beyond).
NOTE: This is a pre-incorporation project; only very entrepreneurial students should apply. Students with photography, video editing, Photoshop, Illustrator, or other design/creative skills are preferred. Also, we are looking for students with computer programming and web development skills.
Placement opportunities with 852 Designs can be found here!
Address your applications to Taylor Amarel (General Manager).