Nina Griffiths' passion for investigating ways business can be developed in recognition of environmental, cultural and social values has won her an overseas adventure.

Nina, a Year 13 student at Kaitaia College, is one of six secondary students who have been selected to travel to California in the United States, following her success at the Young Enterprise Trust's annual Enterprise in Action event at Massey University in Auckland.

At the competition, 80 students worked in teams of eight to complete two challenges, then an individual challenge.

Nina's team was to come up with a means of introducing nutrition into an existing or new product, and to develop a strategy to introduce an agritech product that played to New Zealand's strengths into the American market.


The team response to the challenge was a vaporiser used to vaccinate beehives against the likes of varroa.

Nina's individual idea was to counter expectations of falling visitor numbers from Britain, following the UK's exit from the European Union and a weakening British pound, by linking Canterbury University with British institutions for an international study, incorporating Matariki, to establish an international market for "southern skies" tourism.

Nina's passion is investigating ways in which business can be developed in recognition of environmental, cultural and social values.

"You can save the oceans and make money," she said. She is looking forward to seeing positive examples of social and environmental enterprises in San Francisco.

"That's what we're trying to do with our business in the Lion Foundation Young Enterprise Scheme. Our business, Papataiao, is linking the environment with sustainable businesses, and I can't wait to see what they're doing in Silicon Valley," she said.

The students will spend five days in San Francisco, and hope to visit some of Silicon Valley's leading businesses including Google, Facebook, Tesla and Airbnb during the trip, likely in October.

They will also visit one of FedEx's largest hubs in Oakland to gain an understanding of the transportation industry.