Without innovation, all institutions become irrelevant.
In the IE spirit of innovation, IE University decided to create the Junior International Advisory Board. Universities do not exist for the benefit of its educators and fellow institutions; universities belong to the people, they belong to society, and but above all they belong to students. We not only strive to bring constant change and innovation to IE University, but to teach our students that rather than something to be feared, change is something to be wholeheartedly embraced. The principal aim for the Junior International Advisory Board is above all to gain firsthand knowledge about the concerns, the interests and the values of the rising generations. The members of the Junior International Advisory Board were selected for their diverse interests, novel accomplishments and insights which defy their young years.
IE University formed the Junior International Advisory Board to begin an open dialogue with the kind of young bright minds which will shape the universities of the 21st century. We conducted an exhaustive and international search, contacted over 100 high schools and worked with our IE Offices and after many months narrowed the candidates down to 33 finalists. The final selection included 14 students that hail from 9 different countries and they traveled from as far as Singapore, South Africa and Peru to tell IE what their generation wants out of education.
So – what do they want?
This new pre-university group believed that a true university education is fundamentally modern, practical, creative and socially responsible. They gave personal examples to explain how each of those values could improve education. “I want to see the world as it is – raw, unedited and unfiltered. That is the only way for an artist to see,” said Myhrra Duarte, member of the Junior International Advisory Board from Mexico.
Indeed, rather than their parents, this is not a group which debated the meanings of globalization, but rather this generation embraces it as a fact of life and believes that with the right mindset, it can be a wonderful opportunity for enlightenment and success. They embrace globalization as a way for new opportunities and industries to grow, and for a greater exchange of ideas to take place. “Let’s drop the tension,” suggested François Venter, Junior International Advisory Board member from South Africa, “It’s time to move forward and leave the baggage of the past behind.”
The Junior International Advisory Board members also discussed the very important IE value of humanism. “If education was the human body, humanism would be the heart,” said Ms. Duarte “and without it, education would die.” Humanistic values, they believe, are fundamental not only in your development as a professional but as a human being.
The Junior International Advisory Board members are ambitious, are international, are practical, but above all, they represent their generation who with all of these values and a sincere commitment to excellence, innovation, human values and ethics will not only change IE University, but will change the world.