There are many more experiences that I learnt from UNLEASH which I believe will be useful for me in my future career. I’m grateful for the lessons I’ve learned and where I’m at today.
Discover SIM GE By Bianca, SIM-University of Birmingham Student Flying the SIM flag high at UNLEASH: (from left to right) Jarrett, Ketki, Charlotte and myself. Learning has always been more than just about books and classes. At SIM GE, every student is equipped with skills and are given the platforms to hone them. From 30 May to 6 June 2018, I was given the opportunity together with three other students to take part in an annual prestigious global event called ‘UNLEASH’. The event is a gathering of 1,000 talents from over 100 countries to collaborate on solutions in order to meet the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The experience was enriching and each one of us walked away with different takeaways in our strive to be better individuals that care for our society and the world that we live in. Here are our reflections. Name: Charlotte Chan University/Programme: SIM-University of London BSc (Hons) in Economics and Management "I was privileged to be nominated by staff Mr Kenneth and Ms Patricia from the SIM GE Student Development Department which has played a large role in supporting my student initiatives since day one. I was excited to attend UNLEASH as it presented a unique and different opportunity for me as I had only attended technology hackathons (competitions) previously. “We are living in an age where economies strive to boost growth and profits but we often ignore our ability to integrate sustainability initiatives in what we do. UNLEASH was the perfect place for me to connect with hundreds of like-minded people who wanted to use their capabilities to solve real-world problems. "During UNLEASH, my team and I went through an intensive user-centric ideation process before pitching our idea. My learning experiences came from the multiple challenges all through the week. It was during this time that I learned the importance of being able to be a good team player and leader in a team that comprised four different cultures. By putting our differences aside and recognising each other’s strengths, we were able to foster great synergy despite the exhausting moments." Name: Ketki Acharya University/Programme: SIM-University at Buffalo BSc (Business Administration) and BA (Psychology) "UNLEASH is a massive forum which allows students like us to develop a lot of skills that help in our career progression - these are not just buzz words such as 'critical thinking' or 'problem-solving skills' but these are things such as gaining confidence to present to over 1, 000 people! I was fortunate enough to be able to be selected by one of the mentors at SIM and that is how I heard of it." "After the event, I can now operate on three hours of sleep! On a serious note, by the end of the eighth and final day, I was so inspired by all the people that I came across because they had very wide visions to make the world a better place to live in. This is something which I find to be rare in this day and age. The event also helped me to enhance my presentation skills. I learned to be more concise and impactful and this was very crucial, especially when we had to present a whole idea in just three minutes." Name: Jarrett Tan University/Programme: SIM- University of London BSc (Honours) in Business and Management "I was first made aware of UNLEASH by SIM’s Student Development Department. UNLEASH sparked my interest when I heard that there would be 1,000 delegates from all over the world attending. Personally, I’ve always enjoyed new experiences and learning about different cultures. “UNLEASH also brought together professionals from diverse industries to develop solutions for sustainable development goals and I felt that the potential for such cross-synergy work will be difficult for me to experience anywhere else! "Through this programme, I got the opportunity to work in a team of professionals which include an oncologist, a social worker and an international fashion designer. In the process, I learned about their respective industries and how they have excelled in it. I will bring these lessons with me and apply them in my future career. I also learned how to dissect a problem, find its root cause and develop simple and effective solutions. We applied problem framing techniques and design thinking methodologies to uncover underlying issues to our sustainable development goals." Name: Bianca University/Programme: SIM-University of Birmingham BSc (Hons) Business Management with Communications "I am beyond grateful to be selected as one of the SIM representatives for UNLEASH 2018. As this was my first time joining an international event, I was taken aback when I heard how big this annual event is. Yet, with the support of my advisors and friends, I plucked up my courage to participate in UNLEASH. "When I was pitching my idea during the UNLEASH Innovation Lab process, I felt challenged that some might see me as a young student with no expertise. It was difficult for me to overcome the cultural barriers and catch up with the deadlines at the same time. However, I realised that this was part of the process of learning. I continued to learn and develop my understanding of new and different perspectives and eventually, I was able to gain the confidence and support of those around me. There are many more experiences that I learnt from UNLEASH which I believe will be useful for me in my future career. I’m grateful for the lessons I’ve learned and where I’m at today." Posted online, 24 August 2018