We are extending you the opportunity to apply to be a part of a small group of exclusive thinkers and leaders that are gathering @ a private event on Feb 1 at 7:30pm in downtown NYC to explore how to take a proven model that ends educational inequality to the whole globe
A bit of background
Since the first group of twenty-five kids, 15,000 Indigenous high schoolers and 5000 university students have now been through our program. It’s the largest volunteer movement of university students in Australian history. We’ve managed to close the education gap for this group: 75% of non-Indigenous people between age 17-24 are in employment, university or further training. The Indigenous rate is 42%. AIME kids have closed that gap heading through into jobs or university at 75% + for the last 6 years running.
In further measuring AIME’s impact, Australian universities have completed independent research that has found that the program is one of the best things that university students do during their degree. The same body of research has found what may be expected: that the kids have an increased sense of strength of identity, purpose and aspirations.1 As an economic solution for governments, KPMG found that for every dollar invested into AIME, seven were returned into the Australian economy.2
A letter to the world was recently co-signed by over thirty leaders, including fifteen Australian university leaders, and Australia’s first female Governor General, Quentin Bryce, and it led with the sentence, ‘It’s not every day that an idea that can change the world comes across your desk. Today we wanted to share one we’ve kept secret in Australia for the last 12 years.’3
Ian Narev, the CEO of Commonwealth Bank, has proclaimed of AIME, ‘This in my mind is one of the most impressive start-up stories I have seen in Australia.’4
And Sir Richard Branson, whose sense of bravery and fearlessness in running into the unknown, I’ve tried to emulate, said, ‘The spirit of mentoring should be embedded in all businesses and certainly is at Virgin. AIME reminds me a lot of the Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship with its messages of mentorship, leadership and entrepreneurship. It is an excellent example of using business as a force for good.’5
We’ve received a fair whack of awards. We’re the twelfth best place to work in Asia according to BRW, which shows our commitment to working on the internal systems and people required to scale the movement. AIME was the first ever charity to receive a grant from Google in Australia. And I’ve been lucky to receive a couple of awards, including being the youngest person in Australian history to receive an honorary doctorate.
What all these endorsements say is that this is not an idealistic solution for educators and policy makers across the globe. We are talking about a scalable, cost-effective solution to alleviating disadvantage. One that keeps communities where they are and gives them a reason to band together. A solution that crosses racial and social division.
AIME works. It’s fast, cost effective and adaptable.
And it works because we shift mindsets.
A recent study from McKinsey looking at half a million students across seventy-two countries found that those with a growth mindset outperformed those with a fixed mindset. That is, those who believed that they could improve with hard work did better. It also discovered that mindset was the most powerful individual factor to lifting a student’s educational performance, even more than socio-economic status.6 These concepts are well and truly at the heart of AIME: we believe a permanent shift in mindset can end the cycle of disadvantage.
1 Sarah O’Shea et al., ‘Connection, Challenge, and Change: The Narratives of University Students Mentoring Young Indigenous Australians’, Mentoring and Tutoring: Partnership in Learning, vol. 21, iss. 4, 13 November 2013.
2 KPMG, ‘Economic Evaluation of the Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience Program’, Final Report, December 2013.
3 Jack Manning Bancroft et al., ‘Open Letter to Universities Around the World’, AIME, 27 May 2017.
4 Tony Boyd, ‘Top Banker Ian Narev funds novel Indigenous succession plan’, Boss magazine, 4 December 2015.
6 Mona Mourshed, Marc Kravitz, Emma Dorn, ‘How to improve student educational outcomes: New insights from data analytics’, McKinsey & Company, September 2017.