Cisco was founded on the belief that when we connect, we can change the world for the better. More than 30 years later, that belief is stronger than ever. We combine the power of our technology and the passion of our employees to make the world a better place. In 2016, we made a commitment to help positively impact 1 billion people with digital solutions by 2025.

Our commitment to creating positive change takes many forms. To begin with, we invest in ideas and initiatives that use technology to help solve some of the world’s biggest problems. Last year alone, we contributed $355 million in cash, technology, and expertise to causes that are accelerating global problem solving.

Inspiring the next generation of global problem solvers

We also seek to create an inclusive society in which everyone has the chance to participate in the digital economy. Critical to this is inspiring young people to develop leadership skills and become the next generation of global problem solvers.

This is evident in the Cisco Networking Academy program, which provides technology training curricula to 11,400 educational partners in 180 countries. Networking Academy gives students of diverse backgrounds the opportunity to learn the valuable digital and business skills that are in high demand worldwide. Over the past 20 years, more than nine million people have participated in the program, and 70% of alumni report getting a better job—or their first job ever—as a result.

You can also see it in Cisco’s annual Global Problem Solver Challenge, which awards cash prizes to college students or recent graduates who have developed a technology solution to a social or environmental problem, as well as in our grant support for nonprofit organizations that work to give people better access to education and economic opportunity globally.

These are just a few examples of the many ways in which Cisco is committed to inspiring young people to become the next generation of global problem solvers.

Partnering with Global Citizen to recognize young leaders

This commitment to inspiring young people is one big reason why Cisco recently announced a broad partnership with Global Citizen. Cisco and Global Citizen share the belief that young people are leading the way to create and implement solutions to achieve the United Nations’ Global Goals.

That is why we’re joining forces with Global Citizen to create the Global Citizen Prize for Youth Leadership presented by Cisco. This US$250,000 award will recognize a young person between the ages of 18 and 30 who has advanced one or more of the Global Goals and is positively impacting the world. Submissions are due by 9 am ET Monday, October 15.

Our hope is that this award, which will be announced on September 29 at the Global Citizen Festival in New York, will demonstrate the positive change young people are creating in the world, and inspire new generations of global problem solvers.


For more information on the Global Citizen Prize for Youth Leadership presented by Cisco, go here.



Tae Yoo

No Longer with Cisco