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The Giving Bag Wins Cornell Student Sustainability Competition

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The Giving Bag, a concept to save hotels money on lost and left behind items, is the winning concept in the third annual Cornell student sustainability competition, sponsored by Schneider Electric, a partner of the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research.

 The competition is conducted in conjunction with the annual Sustainability Roundtable at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration (SHA).

The roundtable brought nearly three dozen international hotel practitioners and researchers to the school to discuss current sustainability trends and strategies.

Creators of The Giving Bag, Lilia Karimi (15) and Quinn Cox (15), both students at SHA, won the first-place prize of $2,000, thanks to Schneider's sponsorship.

 They sought to solve an expensive problem for hotels, what to do with lost and left-behind items. Their research determined that about 20% of the items left in guest rooms are intentionally left behind. By providing a bag for guests to stash these items, hotels could easily donate them to charity.

"Each year, these student concepts become more comprehensive," said R. Sean O'Kane, director, hotel strategic alliances and thought leadership for Schneider Electric. "I can see any of these concepts being developed for implementation."

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