Three UNSW students, Tom Terado, Nicholas Ooi and Ewaldo Moritz Neto, were part of a small group selected to attend a prestigious entrepreneurship summit at Stanford University.  

The Asia-Pacific Student Entrepreneurship Society (ASES) is a Stanford organisation founded in 1989 with the goal of connecting student entrepreneurs. Every year, they select 35 of the world’s best collegiate entrepreneurs to participate in a week of entrepreneurship, design thinking and 'wicked problem-solving' at the ASES Summit at Stanford.

Engineering student Ewaldo Moritz Neto, who is on exchange from Brazil, describes his experience:

"This year I was one of the chosen ones. Delegates came from Australia, Canada, China, India, Indonesia, New Zealand, Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Taiwan, USA, Vietnam, and Brazil – that was me.

The program went for a full week, with activities from early in the morning until late night, and there were three key aspects to the summit – speakers and workshops, a pitch competition and networking events.  

The speakers were fantastic. I had the opportunity to meet Brian Acton, co-founder of WhatsApp, who provided great insights about growth and product; Garry Tan, a partner at Y-Combinator with awesome definitions of what it means to be an entrepreneur; and Mike Maples, a founding partner at FloodGate Ventures.

Other speakers included Dennis Boyle, a partner at IDEO, Ashwin Ram, a father of Amazon Alexa, Tom Kosnik, and many more.

The pitch competition was awesome. On the first day, we had to define a problem to solve during the week and use all the concepts that we would be learning through the day to create a solid pitch presentation to a stand of Silicon Valley successful entrepreneurs.


Nicholas (L) and Ewaldo (R) look on as plans are organised.Photo: ASES

We were in groups of six and there were impressive ideas and high-quality presentations.

My team was fortunate enough to win the competition among these amazing entrepreneurs. We had a solid and palpable idea, and the best lesson that I took from this experience, was ‘Keep it Simple’.

The networking was by far the most amazing part of the summit. Having the opportunity to live for a week with entrepreneurs from all over the world was just extraordinary.

I’ve meet incredible people who really want to make people’s lives better, who want to improve their community, teach their peers, and grow as individual and entrepreneurs.

It was just inspiring to be part of this group of future world leaders.

I’ve met great people that I’m now fortunate enough to call friends, across Russia, Philippines, India, Indonesia, Australia, Singapore, etc.

The summit was definitely one of the best experiences so far in my entrepreneurial journey."

Connect with Ewaldo via LinkedIn or his personal blog.