This article is published as part of MUN Spotlight, a special series dedicated to student conferences from around the globe. The aim of this series is to introduce conferences and their organizers to our MUNPlanet audience and beyond. Today we're taking you to Brisbane, subtropical capital of Queensland, Australia, modern, vibrant city with a sunny, sub-tropical climate, unsurpassed natural beauty and GIYC 2016!
MUNPlanet: Please introduce yourself to our community.
Hi there! Our names are Angela, Joanne and Aditya. We are the organisers of the Global Innovative Youth Conference 2016 (GIYC 2016).
MUNPlanet: What is the main mission of your conference?
The aim of GIYC is to bring together aspiring student entrepreneurs from around the world to experience the Australian startup ecosystem. We select top-tier students from more than ten countries and domestic students from all around Australia for a week-long entrepreneurial learning experience comprised of an opening ceremony, a four-day competition and various workshops.
MUNPlanet: Being Asia Pacific’s largest student-run
entrepreneurship conference, there are probably a lot of expectations for GIYC
2016. What experiences should participants prepare for?
There are three main components to GIYC. Firstly, there is the networking component, where students meet 59 other aspiring entrepreneurs from all around the world and become fast friends over the seven days of the conference.
Secondly, there is the educational component. Highlights include an opening ceremony that gathers well-known Australian entrepreneurs, startups, innovative corporations, government, media and academia all in one place to talk about what it is like to start a startup in Australia. There is also a four-day competition where delegates with different skillsets(e.g. computer science, business, sociology) form teams to build a prototype and pitch this prototype in front of Australian investors and venture capitalists. During this time, delegates will also attend several workshops on topics such as “How to do Product Design” and visit several technology companies and accelerators in Brisbane, including Microsoft and River City Labs.
Lastly but not least, there is the fun element to GIYC. We want to show our delegates what Australia is known for. Since GIYC is held during summertime in Australia, delegates will get to see kangaroos, koalas and visit the famous Gold Coast beach.
MUNPlanet: What is the motto of Global Initiative Youth Conference 2016?
The motto of GIYC is to “Think Globally, Act Now”. We believe that there is no better time to start a business than during university and since our world is becoming increasing globalized and connected, it is important to think outside of your local market for your business to scale.
MUNPlanet: When it comes to projects like this, professional organization is the key for their success. Tell us more about the team behind this conference. What challenges have you been facing in this process?
We feel very lucky to have an amazing team organizing GIYC. Special shoutouts must go to our sponsorship directors James, Simon, Michael and Dexter, our media executive Nicole who is in charge of our branding and designs, our logistics director Ying and our legal advisor Tina.
The biggest challenge we face in organizing GIYC is ensuring that it continues for the next 5, 10 years. Since the inaugural GIYC in 2014, our strategies have always been to ensure that GIYC is sustainable in the long run. This sometimes meant forgoing short-term benefits for sustainability.
MUNPlanet: Is international character important aspect of conference’s success, in your opinion?
Yes, most definitely. The “Global” part of GIYC is crucial for our success. One of the biggest reasons our delegates apply to GIYC is because they want to foster close connections with like-minded delegates from all around the world.
We truly believe that fostering global connections is important for our future. By interacting with others from different backgrounds, we can form new and innovative ideas. This is actually reflected in the GIYC committee – we have an organizing team of very diverse individuals that came from China, Malaysia, Australia, India, Greek and so on, so sometimes how we think differ a lot!
MUNPlanet: GIYC 2016 will host speakers from a range of industries, many speakers and visionaries across Australia and worldwide. Can you name a few?
Sure – some of GIYC’s key speakers include Cyan Ta’eed, the cofounder of Envato; Andrew Barnes, founder of GO1 Digital and Y Combinator alumni; Steven Cooper, the developer advocate of Braintree Paypal; Kath Purkis, founder of Her Fashion Box – to just name a few. The full speaker list can be found on our website http://www.globalinnovativeyouth.com
MUNPlanet: Please tell us more about universities whom you have partnered with. Will students from these universities be present on GIYC 2016?
Some of the delegates confirmed as coming to GIYC 2016 study at Oxford University, National University of Singapore and Peking University, University of Philippines and many other universities. So far the accepted delegates come from more than 15 universities.
MUNPlanet: Tell us more about the competition that you have planned for the end of the week, what will it provide to students?
The competition takes place over four days and the goal is for teams to build a prototype that they can pitch in front of Australian investors and venture capitalists. Teams will be formed with diverse skillsets and backgrounds. Over the four days, there will mentors helping the teams to build their prototype. It is also important for the teams to validate their ideas with customers and users.
MUNPlanet: Are there workshops planned as well?
Yes, there is a range of workshops over the four days of the competition that will take students from the very beginning stages of starting a startup to “How to Pitch to Investors”. Topics covered will include business and technical workshops, teaching you skills such as “How to Build a Website” or “How to Talk to Customers”.
MUNPlanet: Besides being on great conference, participants will also enjoy the fantastic Australian Summer with some of the world’s best beaches and sunshine. What is something they should not miss during their stay in Brisbane?
On the last day of the conference, we will all travel down to the Gold Coast to visit the famous Australian tourist destination. Delegates should bring their togs and swimwear if they’re interested in going for a swim!
MUNPlanet: Brisbane is known as a new age city that is at the forefront of digital innovation. A lot of successful organizations have risen there lately. Is there an opportunity for students to visit some of them?
Yes – we will be visiting several technology companies such as the Microsoft Innovation Centre and also River City Labs, which is a well-known startup accelerator in Brisbane.
MUNPlanet: What is one thought or feeling that you want all of your participators to take from conference?
We want our delegates to enjoy the Australian laid-back lifestyle, have fun, learn a lot and make friends with all the other delegates!
MUNPlanet: How do I apply to GIYC 2016?
Apply directly through this link! Registration Form
MUNPlanet: Is there anything that you would like to add in the end?
We are excited to welcome you all to apply for GIYC! If you have any questions, you can send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
GIYC 2016 team, thank you for devoting your time to MUN Spotlight and telling us more about you and your conference. MUNPlanet is looking forward to your conference and strongly advises all our members to check it out. Good luck!
Cover photo credit: Wikipedia
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