The Nest I/O recently organized TechEd as part of its technology education initiative in collaboration with the US State department, a first of its kind program which tackles a diverse set of topics ranging from entrepreneurship to coding. We brought together six individuals with very different skillsets, all of whom were equally passionate about imparting any and all of the knowledge they possess to a room filled with enthusiastic university students hailing from a variety of educational backgrounds. Each of them conducted individual workshops which focused on their specific expertise. The program took place over a course of two days within which we held six individuals workshops which focused on Entrepreneurship, Communication Skills, Hardware, Robotics, Coding and Design. The aim of this collective effort was to provide a certain degree of exposure to these students and open them up to a world of new ideas and experiences.
The response which we received from the attendees was not only overwhelming but also eye-opening for us. Right after our very first visit we found that these students craved the kind of experience we were offering. Their knowledge regarding certain topics was limited and they were very open to changing this and learning as much as possible from the mentors, which reflected in their active participation throughout the workshops. 160 students from UoS (University of Sindh) and 70 students from MUET (Mehran University of Engineering and Technology) voluntarily registered to take part in the program and although we were concerned about whether two consecutive days of workshops would be too tiring, most students expressed their desire to attend longer conferences in future. A student from UoS even stated that ‘these were the best two days of my life’, showing us how important such programs are for these students. Normally, during conferences which are held within metropolitan cities, such as Karachi, the attendance goes down during the second day as people lose interest or get bored. But during TechEd, the attendance increased on second day and students insisted on bringing their friends along. All in all, the response we received from the students was incredible.
Even though the students showed their enthusiasm and willingness to learn simply by attending the two day program, this wasn’t all they did. As opposed to just attending the workshops they actively participated and as soon as we got to know their ideas and thoughts we realized just how creative they were. During the paper bridges activity which was a part of the communication skills workshop, the designs which they produced were immaculate and exhibited their creativity.
There is so much untapped potential within many such universities which students do not get to actualize simply because there is a lack of resources and opportunities. The Nest I/O is taking the first step towards changing this by providing students an outlet within which they can learn and grow. We’ve successfully visited two universities and intend on visiting four more with the hope of seeing an all new batch of unfamiliar faces who’ve come together to learn more about some of the things which have always been around them.