Relying on formal education is not enough

Education plays a huge part in shaping the way youth think, behave, and contribute to society. Educational institutions have not changed in over a century, while there have been radical changes in the workplace environment. There needs to be a radical transformation in the educational landscape, and it should reflect the changing landscape of our industries.  

“They need to immerse themselves in the process of creating an actual solution to a real problem.”

“It is essential for our youth to seek training outside the classroom. They need to immerse themselves in the process of creating an actual solution to a real problem.” says Cosmosupplylab’s founder Ralph Reichert.

In contributing to a real workplace, today’s youth will be able to move away from fictional projects and what-if scenarios. They can experiment, find mentors, and learn by doing. That includes learning from failure and taking risks.

The safe path is the path to mediocrity

The risk-adverse culture among Hong Kong graduates is reflected in the Global Startup Ecosystem Report in 2017. According to the report, most university graduates choose a path of stable corporate positions. Just under 30% of graduates go into banking or financial industries. Despite Hong Kong being the 5th fastest growing startup ecosystem. The number of entrepreneurs increased by almost 7% in 2016 from the year before.

To solve this problem, we should show young people that there are more paths to a stable future. One way is to introduce them to an environment where they can build a career and break with conventional thinking.

The untried path?

Very recently, Cosmosupplylab recruited a number of interns. We provide them with a creative space where they will be able to experiment, fail, and try again. This builds resilience, and they will hopefully be able to gain confidence to go on a more unconventional, often untried path.

“We are product creators and we need graduates who are not afraid of getting their hands dirty. Graduates, who purposefully break the rules and think outside of corporate conventions”

Our interns’ backgrounds are diverse; ranging from graphic design to game design, industrial design to illustration. They contribute to designing products, creating them in our R&D prototype lab, improving brand guidelines through research, and creating social and digital content.

Image of Creative thinking and problem solving at Cosmosupplylab

Our internship program aims to nurture their talents so that they could gain the opportunity to create something tangible from scratch. In doing so, they will be able to discover the rewards of creating something with their hands. This allows them to enjoy the manual process of design and prototyping, in an increasingly digital landscape.

“We are product creators and we need graduates who are not afraid of getting their hands dirty. Graduates, who purposefully break the rules and think outside of corporate conventions” says Maurico Kendel, Design Lab Manager at Cosmo’s prototype lab.

Bridging the gap

Despite our intern’s different fields of study, all of them will try to take an abstract idea and turn them into something visually or physically tangible. “We encourage them to use their unique skills and passions to bring new perspectives to the table. In bringing in different types of talents, innovative thinking can grow” Ralph Reichert emphasized. 

It is through constant growth that today’s youth will be able to succeed after finishing their education. There is only so much that traditional education can teach. It is through actual experience that students will be able to exercise the lessons taught in the classroom.

 “We encourage them to use their unique skills and passions to bring new perspectives to the table.”

In an increasingly virtual world, it is still essential to be able to create something with your own hands. To create something of substance — something real and useful. They can practice this skill through real life experience. It is here the gap between education and the industry can be bridged.

– armina menor