I am a Grade 10 student and am extremely passionate about business and technology. I really enjoy applying my skills in the real world where I hope to be a tech entrepreneur. Dragon’s Den, a competition where students proposed their ideas to judges, was an amazing opportunity for me as I was able to take a big step forward, towards my future aspirations.
My startup initiative which won the 2016 Dragon’s Den competition was called the 'Gift of Connectivity.' It is a service that allows grandparents whose children live abroad to get digitally connected with them through the help of the Gift of Connectivity. Parents and children these days are fully integrated with technology. But unfortunately, many of today's grandparents and elderly people missed that era of digital connectivity. In this generation where children are living far from their parents, the only way to stay in touch, is through technology. The Gift of Connectivity guides the elderly to get online and connected by smartphone. From helping them to buy a phone to teaching them how to set it up, the Gift of Connectivity empowers the elderly to use Whatsapp, Skype and numerous other customised services that facilitate an efficient and easy connection with their family.
The idea for this service all started from seeing the challenges faced by my grandparents when trying to contact us, exchange photos or use basic smartphone features. Knowing the capabilities of a smartphone, I realised that so much more could be done if only my grandparents knew how to use those features. This then evolved into the Gift of Connectivity startup initiative as “Necessity is the mother of invention.” It was also a contributing factor towards my acceptance into the Stanford Pre-Collegiate entrepreneurship course for which I went through a highly selective application process. I hope to continue the Gift of Connectivity from being an idea to a working reality after having developed it through the Dragon's Den competition. The competition involved passing through multiple rounds. In the first round our ideas were judged by the Dragon’s Den team. They selected only a third of the applicants for the second round where three teachers then select four finalists. The final round really tested my confidence on stage. In front of five professional judges in the business and economics industry, I presented the Gift of Connectivity. It really enabled me to be much more conscious of how technology can support the society.
It was my continued passion and zeal for this initiative that allowed me to get this far. My knowledge and interest in technology was also the base for this idea which in the end, became something which I will be able to carry on forever.