Start up the Upstart start-up bus

2016-06-15 18:34
Students taking part in the Upstart project at UCT show off their “tickets” to their journey of discovering new insights into education.

Students taking part in the Upstart project at UCT show off their “tickets” to their journey of discovering new insights into education.

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Interesting innovations in education could be influencing teachers with an exciting project at the University of Cape Town.

This year the UCT vice-chancellor’s social innovation challenge, UCT Upstarts, is asking student social entrepreneurs to redesign education in South Africa.

Following last year’s successful debut programme that resulted in the launch of 12 student start-ups overnight at its signature “Idea Auction”, UCT Upstarts is again putting young South African social innovators on the map with its 12-week social innovation curriculum and a brief to “Re-educate Education”.

“As a research focused institution, we are all about how things can be done differently and in a better way. It is encouraging to see the kind of impact that this initiative has had since being launched last year, and we are looking forward to an even bigger and better project this year.”

For 12 weeks from April to September, students are attending two lunchtime coaching/workshop sessions a week (Mindblowing Mondays and Thriving Thursdays) as “passengers” aboard a double-decker bus on UCT’s upper campus.

The “Upstarts Coach” is the epicentre of social innovation, a 24-hour express bus journey from upstart to start-up.

Over R110 000 was raised on the floor at last year’s Idea Auction, with additional in-kind support to the approximate value of R500 000 generated too (coaching sessions, resources, office space, transport, camera crews, computers, building materials, expertise and network contacts).

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