Evolving school environments to encourage entrepreneurship and grow the future visionaries of Aotearoa, today.
Education during my younger years always seemed to have a focus on fitting into boxes.
I discovered much later on in life I was more of a ‘box maker’ than a ‘box filler’.
While we all need to fit in occasionally, when we are honest about the challenges we face - right across the business and social spectrum, it’s ‘box making’ not ‘box filling’ that is needed to overcome such challenges.
By encouraging those that think outside of the box, to come forward with their fresh perspectives and new ideas on how to revitalise post covid-19 Aotearoa, we energise and see further - the founding principle of VisionWeek.
We need Innovation that is in its nature removed from any framework to conform.
Entrepreneurs are continuously challenging the status quo, and are unafraid to leave the repetitiveness of ‘same old same old’. To refer to Albert Einstein, ‘the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result’. Entrepreneurs get that, they are the OG ‘box-makers’ through and through.
My belief is that schools in Aotearoa, if they have the ability to do so, should bring forward the culture of being a ‘box maker’ and stimulate the next generation of entrepreneurs today to actively engage in the VisionWeeks of tomorrow.
21C Skills and entrepreneurship are critical in creating our post-covid reality. Building the ‘new normal’ needs the lifelong learning mentality that 21c advocates and entrepreneurial thinking to move away from the linear, upward moving line of ‘progress’ ingrained in our young people.
The future is a “regenerative and distributive” model designed to engage everyone with continuous learning, improvements and adaptation, which youth are brilliant at.
We must create foundations and champion the mindset of disruption to encourage our young people to discover what a brighter future could be. To create what we can’t see. It takes a certain level of rebellion and dissatisfaction with what is happening around us to break out of the mould. And, if they choose, schools have the opportunity to say rebellion in the way of new ideas is OK and change, adapting to change, is not a maybe but a must.
Underlying this is ensuring our Young people understand the value of a creative culture, of joining dots together in new ways. Be it in schools or universities, we must recognise and actively articulate that answers aren’t cut in stone and even the simplest idea can transform into something much bigger. Just like the Chorus ad currently being aired on TV with the female Entrepreneur and her successful Jelly-making business. Or the Horohoro Kura Like A Boss students who designed and sold beeswax wraps to use the profit to regenerate their towns stream. Or Renwick Intermediate boys team who designed BILLOWS to stuff your puffer jackets into and you have an instant pillow. Ingenious and innovative!
Embedding entrepreneurial culture within the education system is the building block for 21st century education… and it has to include actively moving away from compliance models, models of ‘fitting in’ to those that push to ‘see beyond’ and inspire.
Although there is a time and place for conformity, it is collision and impact that makes us sweat and see. When we bring our new ideas and attitudes forward it could be less about having them evaluated in the now and more about shaping and moulding how they can deliver to new patterns and beliefs in the future. Encouraging our growing ‘box-makers’, today.
Julia is an international insights and communication strategist, passionate about technology and people. She has recently returned to Aotearoa and co-founded a Social Enterprise PeopleForPeople a youth-led Pacific initiative focused on strengthening digital empowerment. A better Aotearoa is where everyone has the opportunity to move forward with the advancement of technology. Follow or reach out to her on LinkedIn to learn more - https://www.linkedin.com/in/julia-arnott-neenee/