At the beginning of the year, young Canadian entrepreneur Youssef Gendy was a very busy 17-year-old. In the mornings he attended his final semester of high school. In the afternoons he’d rush to his student internship at Deloitte. And the rest of his days were taken up with homework, friends, and working on new business ideas.
Then the quarantine began. Now there were no in-person classes to attend. There was no office open for his internship. Instead, Youssef found himself at home all day with his family in Oakville, Ontario.
“My day,” says Youssef, “consisted largely of waking up, reading for hours, and working on myself through learning things I’ve always meant to devote attention to.” These included filmmaking, personal branding, UX/UI design and journaling.
“My most productive hours were essentially forced on to me,” Youssef says. As well as launching his own YouTube channel, he also enrolled in an online learning program — available through the RBC Future Launch at Home resource hub.
Find out more about how RBC Future Launch is empowering the youth of today, for the jobs of tomorrow.
Over the next eight weeks he participated in the League of Innovators Foundation Course for young entrepreneurs. He took part in group coaching calls hosted by successful guest speakers where he learned how to create a viable product.
Transitioning to online learning via digital workshops was no hurdle Youssef says. “Generation Z is savvy in terms of connecting to distance learning.”
Youssef found distance learning far from lonely — connecting virtually with other young entrepreneurs from across the country was both beneficial and enjoyable. Asked what the highlight of the course was, he says without hesitation, “my cohort.”
Since participating in the League of Innovators course, Youssef, Micheal Hana, his co-founder, and two interns have been preparing to launch TagTeach. TagTeach is a platform that makes it easy for teachers to accomplish all their most time consuming tasks–creating rubrics, marking assignments, and planning lessons–all in one platform, directly integrated into their Google Classroom. So teachers can spend more time focusing on what matters most: teaching.
Taking part in an online course has helped Youssef to be a digital entrepreneur who works with the TagTeach team remotely. But the biggest way the League of Innovators workshop helped this young Canadian entrepreneur has been in creating what he calls, “The right mindset to love the problem and not the solution.” If there are sudden changes in the exact product being delivered by his team? Youssef’s ready for it.
Life may continue to throw up curveballs for the country’s young people: Youssef has just found out his first semester The University of Western Ontario will take place entirely online. But like many young Canadians, he’s getting ready for whatever happens next. He’s resilient. He’s hopeful. He’s gaining the digital skillset that will help prepare him for the future, whatever it may look like.
This article is intended as general information only and is not to be relied upon as constituting legal, financial or other professional advice. A professional advisor should be consulted regarding your specific situation. Information presented is believed to be factual and up-to-date but we do not guarantee its accuracy and it should not be regarded as a complete analysis of the subjects discussed. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the authors as of the date of publication and are subject to change. No endorsement of any third parties or their advice, opinions, information, products or services is expressly given or implied by Royal Bank of Canada or any of its affiliates.