ASU tapped to help Obama administration fight human trafficking

January 6, 2013

“Our fight against human trafficking is one of the great human rights causes of our time, and the United States will continue to lead it…” – President Barack Obama, Sept. 25, 2012

The Obama Administration is asking students to come up with new and innovative ways to end human trafficking, and Arizona State University is answering the challenge. Download Full Image

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has selected ASU to play a central role in the launch of its newest initiative in the war on modern slavery.  On Jan. 9, ASU will host a community-wide event to build momentum and raise awareness nationally and globally for, USAID’s Counter Trafficking in Persons (C-TIP) Campus Challenge.

Campus Challenge: A call to action against human trafficking
4:30 p.m.-6 p.m., Jan. 9
Memorial Union, Ventana Ballrooms B and C, Tempe campus
(This event will be webcast and recorded live at

This free ASU event will provide students with opportunities to hear from and interact with expert speakers, community advocates and student leaders working in the anti-human trafficking space and become involved in the movement by making a difference as community volunteers. ASU’s College of Public Programs, ASU Global and Changemaker Central are co-sponsoring the event.

“This ambitious initiative aims to harness the creativity and expertise of the broader university community to address challenges that were once thought to be intractable,” said Jonathan Koppell, dean of ASU’s College of Public Programs. “USAID has taken to calling it ‘open source development,’ which reflects the Agency’s desire to open development to problem-solvers everywhere – from students on campuses to CEOs of major corporations,” he said.

The Campus Challenge aligns closely with ASU’s leadership in anti-human trafficking research activities, and other initiatives that focus on bringing to bear previously untapped sources of innovation to solve complex problems, including 10,000 Solutions, Changemaker Central and the White House Policy Challenge.
Koppell said the university’s involvement in these initiatives captured the attention of Sarah Mendelson, deputy assistant administrator with USAID’s Bureau for Democracy, Conflict and Humanitarian Assistance.

“After learning of our capabilities and expertise in this space, Sarah expressed her excitement about building out a more robust engagement between USAID and ASU, beginning with our hosting the January event,” Koppell said. “We at the College of Public Programs are proud to partner with ASU Global and Changemaker Central to bring this important event to ASU and the larger community.”  

Responding to President Obama’s Sept. 25 call to action at the Clinton Global Initiative held in New York City, USAID administrator Rajiv Shah announced the Campus Challenge on Oct. 11 at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California.

The Campus Challenge includes a contest that invites students to propose the best technological solutions to help end trafficking in persons in the developing world.

“USAID’s Campus Challenge encourages college students across the nation to be agents of change in the fight against human trafficking,” said Jacqueline Smith, executive director of ASU’s Office of University Initiatives.

“At ASU, students are provided with the tools and resources they need to be changemakers. Every day we work to inspire, catalyze and sustain student-driven social change,” Smith said.

The C-TIP Campus Challenge is designed to increase global awareness about trafficking, inspire activism among students and scholars at colleges and universities worldwide and generate new, creative ideas and solutions to stop human trafficking. The effort to help the estimated 20.9 million people around the world who are enslaved in sex or labor exploitation will occur across three phases and through the USAID website

During the first phase of the initiative, which began on Oct. 11, students were encouraged to join the online community to participate in discussion groups on various trafficking subtopics, host online conversations, and crowd-source issues that will frame the problems to be addressed in the next phase.

The contest phase, which concludes Jan. 31, is open for applications from U.S. and international students proposing innovative technological solutions to advance trafficking-in-persons prevention and protection. After the contest closes, the community will be invited to rate the proposals received and provide suggestions on how submissions can be improved.

Early in the month of March, USAID will announce the semifinalists and in the following three weeks, semifinalist proposals will be judged by an expert C-TIP and technologist panel. One first-place prize of $5,000 and one or more $2,500 runner-up prizes will be awarded to the top entries. The winners will be announced at the end of March and will be invited to share their proposals with donors, C-TIP and technology professionals.

USAID said it is partnering with Not for Sale, Slavery Footprint, Free the Slaves, MTV Exit, and Abolition International on this project to maximize efforts and inspire millions of people already working on the issue and invite new activists to the cause, ultimately, strengthening the movement to return freedom to the millions of people robbed of their dignity every day.

Associate Director, Marketing & Communication, Educational Outreach & Student Services


Sun Devils come back from 13-points down and top Colorado

January 7, 2013

The Arizona State men's basketball team fought off a slow start and rallied from a double-digit deficit in the first half, to down the Colorado Buffaloes, 65-56, Sunday evening at Wells Fargo Arena.

Three Sun Devils scored in double figures to lead the team to its first 2-0 start in the Pac-12 since 2007-08, and for just the fourth time since joining the conference. Arizona State improves its record to 13-2, while Colorado falls to 10-4 on the season and 0-2 in conference play. Download Full Image

Carrick Felix scored a game high 20 points and pulled in eight boards to lead the Sun Devils. Jonathan Gilling recorded his second career double-double, scoring 12 points and grabbing 10 rebounds. Jordan Bachynski added 16 points, seven rebounds, and nine blocks. Bachynski's nine blocks is the most by a Sun Devil in a Pac-10/12 game. Chris Colvin also tallied nine points off the bench.

Although Colorado held the rebounding edge, 40-39, the Buffaloes felt the presence of the Sun Devils in the paint. ASU scored 28 points in the paint and exceeded their season average with 13 blocks. Coming into the game the Sun Devils ranked third in the country in blocked shots. Bachynski was also ranked third in individual blocks coming into the game, and doubled his average output.

Colorado jumped out to a quick lead, 9-2, which forced Arizona State to call a timeout early in the first half. Colorado's defensive presence in the opening minutes made it difficult for the Sun Devils to find any offensive rhythm, forcing poor shot selection and turnovers in the opening minutes of the game.

The Buffaloes used an 11-0 run, pushing the score to 13-2, before Felix broke the Devils' dry spell with a layup with 13:43 remaining in the half. During the run, ASU was held without a basket for almost four minutes.

The Devils fought back from their deficit, narrowing the lead to six points, as a result of a 9-2 run that lasted 2:25, trailing Colorado 22-16 with 6:22 left in the first.

Led by an offensive spurt by Felix, who drained two consecutive jumpers from beyond the arc, Arizona State continued chipping away at Colorado's lead. At the final official timeout in the first half, ASU trailed 29-24, after being down by 13 earlier in the half.

The Sun Devils used a 6-0 run over the final two minutes of the half before the Buffaloes hit a layup at the buzzer, and Arizona State trailed Colorado, 33-30, at the break.

Despite starting just 2-10 from the field, ASU picked up the pace offensively and made 9-14 following the slow start and finished the half shooting 45.8 percent. Meanwhile the Buffaloes started the game hot, but was just 4-10 on their final shots of the half, and was shooting a slightly better than ASU, 46.7 percent on 14-30 shooting.

Felix and Bachynski each tallied 10 points in the first half to lead the Sun Devils back into the game. Bachynski anchored ASU defensively, blocking two shots in the first half and disrupting Colorado's offense, allowing the Devils comeback.

Arizona State carried its momentum into the second half, trailing 39-37 at the first official timeout. As with the end of the first half, ASU looked confident offensively and defensively, while the Buffaloes looked disoriented, despite maintaining a slim lead.

The Devils tied the game, 39-39, with 14:21 remaining in the game with a Gilling tip in, to draw even for the first time since the opening minutes. Following a big defensive stand, in which Ruslan Pateev stuffed Colorado's Andre Roberson, Felix gave the Devils their first lead of the game, 41-39, with 12:40 on the game clock.

After the Buffaloes tied the game, 41-41, ASU went on a 7-2 run to lead 48-43, forcing a Colorado timeout with 5:21 remaining in the game. The run lasted over five minutes to give Arizona State its largest advantage of the night to that point.

Arizona State went into the final official timeout of the game on a 10-0 run, and led, 54-43, with 3:48 left in the game. ASU held Colorado to just 10 points in the half heading into the final moments of the game.

Colorado fought back, trimming the Sun Devils' lead to five points in the final minute, taking advantage of Arizona State's struggles from the free throw line. The Buffaloes were not able to get any closer than that, and ASU held on for a 65-56 comeback win.

The Sun Devil defense stepped up after Colorado started the game shooting over 50 percent. ASU cooled off Colorado's shooters, limiting them to 35.3 percent from the field at the end of the game, and 26.3 percent in the second half.

Offensively, Arizona State fought off a cold start from the field to finish the game shooting 42.6 percent on 20-47 from the field. The Sun Devils struggled from three-point range, shooting 29.4 percent, and on free throws, finishing with a 60.6 percent mark from the charity stripe.

Colorado was led by Spencer Dinwiddle, who had 19 points, followed by the efforts of Askia Booker and Josh Scott, who had 13 an 10 points respectively. Roberson was the top rebounder for the Buffaloes, grabbing 13 boards.

Arizona State will head to Corvallis on Thursday for a 9:30 p.m. (MT) tilt against Oregon State. The Sun Devils will also visit Oregon on their road trip, facing the Ducks on Sunday at 7 p.m. (MT). 

Juno Schaser

Event coordinator, Biodesign Institute