Ensuring connectivity and working to bridge the digital divide is a key focus for A10 Networks working with our customers, and our training and certification offerings encourage young people to up-skill and re-skill so that they can find growing success in the IT sector. These initiatives help empower the next generation of talent to aim high and achieve more.
Supporting this mission, we have been working closely with Ultra Education C.I.C over the past year to empower young people through the vehicle of entrepreneurship. I have certainly been inspired by the work of Ultra Education since I met David Sobo the COO of Ultra Education some years ago. David and I met outside the workplace taking part in sporting activities, we have both come from different sides within the IT industry and share a common interest in developing and supporting the younger generation to succeed.
Ultra Education is a non-profit that empowers young people to believe in their own creativity, business capability, and resilience through a range of workshops. CEO, Julian Hall, describes Ultra Education’s philosophy, “We believe that talent is everywhere, but opportunity isn’t. And with that we want to enable children and young people to create their own opportunities.”
The most common and most extensive program that the organization offers is a 12-week session in which children work through a curriculum that focuses on ingraining the ability to identify and monetize their passions, building a series of life and business skills as they learn how to create, research, and market a business idea.
At the end of the course, the ‘ultrapreneurs’ take their new businesses to a Youth Business Fair, where they have the opportunity to sell their wares to friends, family, and other attendees. Imbued with confidence and their new business-savvy, many of these stalls sell out by the time the day is over.
As a supporter of Ultra Education, A10 Networks played a role in one of these fairs in spring this year. Katie Heyd, channel marketing executive at A10 Networks, attended the event at Wembley Stadium and met the many ‘ultrapreneurs’, learning more about their lives, passions, and their creations, which ranged from pasta sauces to self-written kids’ books.
She described her impressions of the fair: “I was so inspired to meet these young business people and to hear about their unique ideas and the creative processes that brought them to the fair. As we handed out certificates to the participants, I was humbled to play a role in a moment that could even kick-start their careers and future successes.”
“As bronze sponsors, A10 Networks will be funding 20 students throughout the 12-week program as they create and perfect their own innovative business idea, pursue their passion, and learn to believe in their own entrepreneurship.”
– Anthony Webb, Vice President of Sales, A10 Networks International
Since our first conversation with Ultra Education, I have been passionate about the continuation and up-scaling of our support for its invaluable work. Working closely with COO, David Sobo, A10 launched a bronze sponsorship for the latest 12-week program, which will culminate in Ultra’s 2022 Winter Youth Business Fair on 3 December at Wembley Stadium. Following the great success of the Spring Business Fair, I am truly excited and honored to see the great work that is already going into the Winter Fair.
Ultra Education’s mission has inspired widespread support, including from Lotto community fund, British Airways and Microsoft. With this momentum, the Winter Youth Business Fair is set to be three times the size of anything Ultra has done before.
As bronze sponsors, A10 Networks will be funding 20 students throughout the 12-week program as they create and perfect their own innovative business idea, pursue their passion, and learn to believe in their own entrepreneurship.
Experiences like those that Ultra Education provides their ultrapreneurs are invaluable for young people’s confidence as they step into the world of work. The skills they learn will be beneficial, not just professionally, but as an essential handbook throughout their lives. Most importantly, it will inspire these young people to believe in the power of their own abilities to experiment, grow, and succeed.
This is an incredible program to be involved in and I am excited to see what the next generation of ‘ultrapreneurs’ create and what they can teach us.
As our good friends say: “Ultra and out!”