In September 2017, the Yerzhan Tatishev Foundation’s High Tech Academy opened its doors, becoming Kazakhstan’s first school to specialise in Project Based Learning. Every day, students work in an innovative environment, collaborating on projects and gaining valuable knowledge for real-world applications.
I first saw Project Based Learning at the High-Tech Charter School in San Diego, where I was lucky enough to see first-hand the benefits; students were working collaboratively on a dialogue project; researching approaches for healing community tensions. As a group, they created a forum, receiving input from local leaders and residents and presenting their findings for future dialogue projects. Project Based Learning allows students to make a vital difference to society and gain valuable life skills, offering fantastic opportunities to learn through experience rather than simply chasing grades.
I believe Project Based Learning is the way forward for education, offering students valuable practical skills and, if implemented widely, transforming global education. The Yerzhan Tatishev Foundation invested in High Tech Academy as I believe it can be a shining example of the potential for future innovation and success.
High Tech Academy encourages students to embrace the current digital revolution and rise to the challenges of the 21st Century, encouraging students to use their imagination, dynamism and innovation, applying what they’ve learnt to real life situations. I want Academy graduates to use their practical experience and knowledge to be the next leading innovators, business leaders and daring entrepreneurs.
As an entrepreneur, innovation is at the heart of all my work. Our early success in Kusto Group came from reinvigorating ailing enterprises in post-Soviet Kazakhstan, developing new techniques and methods to seize the opportunities. I see the same link between our early work in Kusto Group and the High Tech Academy, encouraging students to develop their skills and knowledge through practical experience.
I strongly believe that High Tech Academy graduates will prove the value of project-based learning, becoming shining examples for the success and positive development of such an approach. Challenging students with real-world problems is surely the best way to ensure they are fully prepared for the challenging and ever-changing world of work.