An International Student Winner of the 2024 “Jeunes Ambassadeurs” Awards for Innovation

Zie Ismael KONE has won the Innovation Trophy of the 2024 edition of the “Jeunes Ambassadeurs” program for his project: "Powering Data Centers with Renewable Energy (Green Hydrogen)."

The Young Ambassadors program: fostering creativity and innovation

He is 22 years old and full of energy, just like his winning project! Zie Ismael, a double-degree student from Côte d'Ivoire at INPHB (National Polytechnic Institute Félix Houphouët-Boigny), took part in this year's prestigious Young Ambassadors program. 
This program aims to promote international activities in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region and its main university cities such as Lyon, Saint-Etienne, Chambéry, Clermont-Ferrand, and Grenoble. This regional program brings together international students from various backgrounds, each sponsored by an economic decision-maker from Auvergne Rhône-Alpes, to develop an innovative project (cultural, scientific, economical, ecological, etc.) that connects the students’ home region with their university city in France… Alongside their coach, the students participate in major events throughout the year, including company visits and cultural discoveries. Additionally, they take part in the annual Trophées, which recognize their creativity. This year, out of 154 Young Ambassadors, 15 were selected as finalists for the 5 trophies: Citizenship, Attractiveness, Innovation, Peace, and JA4EVER. The 3 finalists in each category were then interviewed by a jury, and the winner for each Trophy was chosen. Zie Ismael is one of this year's 5 winners. 

An innovative, local, and 100% renewable solution

Zie Ismael’s project aims to offer an innovative, local, and 100% renewable solution for hosting digital data using hydrogen. The project was inspired by Zie Ismael’s mentor, Pierre Maccioni of GHYGA, providing technical expertise to the Young Ambassador. Currently, so-called "green" data centers run on solar energy during the day but are powered at night by petrol-guzzling generators, an imperfect solution. With this project, part of the electricity will be stored in the form of hydrogen during the day and the hydrogen will be used to generate electricity at night.

The Jeune Ambassadeur label: a real game-changer

The Jeunes Ambassadeurs association has been a great resource for starting the project with the Region and companies, as Zie Ismael admits: “Wearing the Jeune Ambassadeur label has helped me make contacts and be taken seriously." Besides networking opportunities, Zie Ismael also highly recommends the program to future international students for its friendly atmosphere. He mentions: “the Jeunes Ambassadeurs association has enabled me to have a family in Valence, by setting up convivial and professional moments, and allowing me to get to know people in Rhône-Alpes." 

Would you like to become our next Young Ambassador? We are excited to hear your innovative ideas at the beginning of next school year.

Watch a video of the winning projects here.