Principal's Perspective | 01-Dec-2016

Leading the Way

By Rosemary Evans, Principal

UTS students, like so many young people their age, are often extremely aware of new trends and developments in society. Many relish the chance to forge new directions and to lead the way. They are eager to pounce on new opportunities and absorb new ideas. 

One such opportunity recently presented itself when UTS was approached by an alumnus who works for the consulting firm McKinsey and Company. Two of his colleagues, Nadeem Nathoo and Navid Nathoo, were establishing a youth program entitled The Knowledge Society (TKS). 

The purpose of TKS is to introduce youth to the world of entrepreneurship, innovation and technological disruption. Nadeem and Navid explain their mission, thus:

Advancements in technology are enabling a proliferation of innovation, which has a strong impact on the way we live. New careers are being created, while other careers are being automated. To successfully impact tomorrow's world, young people need to expose themselves to the latest trends, network with like-minded individuals, and understand how to adapt to rapid change.

Topics for focus are diverse and include everything from cryptocurrency and artificial intelligence to stem cells, aerospace, genomics and ultra-poverty. As part of TKS' program, students are connected with mentors and explore emerging technologies. The students are also exposed to how others have created their own enterprises and introduced change through technological innovation. 

Following a lunchtime information session, more than 120 UTS students applied to TKS, and 18 were selected for the program. The student-participants learned to network; they undertook challenges and visited startups; their eyes were opened to new career paths and to how they could create their own futures. 

Here’s what two of them had to say about the experience.

Ananya: I personally really enjoyed the program! The thing that I found to be most valuable, was not the tangible knowledge I acquired, but, rather, the skills. I now know how to network and grasp opportunities that fly by. It really taught me how to allow my experiences to give value to me, and if I had to take one thing out of TKS as a whole, it would be that I decide what I take out of a situation, and that I play a huge part in shaping my own future. Finally, I really enjoyed being in a room with people who are just as keen as I am. I got to talk with youth my age, who have done some super innovative things, and we all got to learn from each other. Hopefully I can go back next year!

Marcel: TKS helped me realize my potential, and gave me opportunities to pursue my passions. It offered a truly unique learning experience, very different from the average school. As Nadeem would say: “To reach unconventional success, you must follow an unconventional path”.


Photograph courtesy of The Knowledge Society