Dusit Thani College students reach the Final Round of the Sustainable Hospitality Challenge 2024 

24 May 2024

Sustainability is one of the most urgent issues the world faces, and one of the biggest industries addressing this challenge is hospitality. An initiative in hospitality education to nurture the development of new, innovative sustainability products is the Sustainable Hospitality Challenge 2024 (SHC) founded by Hotelschool The Hague, one of the world’s top hospitality schools in the Netherlands. The SHC empowers the next generation of hospitality leaders to think outside the box and develop their own innovative sustainable products and to provide potential solutions to the sustainability challenges of the hospitality industry. 

Recently, Dusit Thani College and Dusit International’s ASAI Chinatown hosted the semi-finals round for Asia and Africa in Bangkok. The event gathered more than 70 hospitality students, hailing from some of the best hospitality schools in Asia and Africa, to compete and prove their product and plan would make the biggest impact on sustainability. 13 captivating ideas were presented from 13 teams which could be put into real practice and each pitch, product and plan was carefully judged by a panel of industry experts. However, only two teams were able to advance further to the final round and the team from Dusit Thani College, Thailand’s first and largest institute dedicated to hospitality education and training, emerged victorious. 

The winning product, “Thara”, the organic water purifying system, is the groundbreaking idea of three Dusit Thani College students from the Professional Culinary Arts International Program, Mr. Supakorn Zhang, Mr. Shaun Ajay Mathew, and Ms. Jirada Kluaymaingarm. The idea comes from the concept of using plants to absorb residues from gray water to be able to reuse it for other non-consuming purposes. The prototype of this system illustrated how the water ran past the vertical green wall to the sterilizing box before going to the tap, reducing energy consumption and the waste of used water. The students also ran a laboratory test for the quality of sterilized water, showing its effectiveness of 75% which could be a promising sign of practical utilization in the industry. 

“These past months working with two incredible team members, Auitang and Shaun, have been an extraordinary experience. The support and guidance we received were immense and a key reason why we made it to the finals. The time we spent working on this project was exhausting but worthwhile. I am deeply thankful for the challenges we faced, and the sleepless nights spent juggling between schoolwork and this project. I’m incredibly happy and grateful for the opportunity to work on this project” said Ms. Jirada Kluaymaingarm 

The other finalist team product wasDynapath from Vin University, Vietnam, which created power-generating tiles from recycled plastics. The idea was derived from the concept of optimizing the benefits of daily activities, walking in this case, whereby the tiles would produce energy when stepped on. In addition, the idea aimed to promote physical activities of guests, reduce the use of power-consuming elevators, and recycle plastic waste. 

Simon Lloyd, Dean – Faculty of Hospitality Management, Dusit Thani College commented, “We are delighted that the Dusit Thani College team has made it to the finals of the Sustainable Hospitality Challenge. Dusit Thani College strives to support sustainable practices and initiatives which benefit both the hospitality industry and our own college, and events and accomplishments such as reaching the SHC Finals help further drive interest and awareness among our students in sustainable practices, products, and futures.” 

Dusit Thani College and Dusit International are committed to developing sustainable practices and through Dusit International’s new “Tree of Life” initiative, a group-wide sustainability program, both the College and the Dusit International are taking steps to ensure the future sustainability of the hospitality industry in Thailand and across the world. The finals of the Sustainable Hospitality Challenge will be hosted in Dubai as part of the Future Hospitality Summit from September 30th to October 2nd. 

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