Twenty Grade 10 learners from across the country recently made the cut as 2011 Brand Ambassadors for the youth brand HIP2B2, an initiative founded by Mark Shuttleworth in 2002, which seeks to stimulate interest in science-, maths- and technology-related subjects as well as develop entrepreneurial skills.
According to Cathryn Treasure, general manager of BSquare Communications,HIP2B2 was inundated with a record 850 national nominations sent in by teachers as far afield as Kathu in the Northern Cape. After careful consideration and a one-on-one interview process, the 2011 HIP2B² Brand Ambassador team was selected; each learner ultimately chosen based on his or her passion for learning, personality and ability to inspire. “HIP2B² speaks directly to the youth about the importance of developing skills such as analytical thinking, basic problem-solving as well as confident communication; and illustrates how hard work and perseverance are attributes people need to fine tune in order to be successful,” adds Treasure. “Our brand ambassadors, therefore, need to embody this message and stand out as young, motivated leaders and role models.”
For the second consecutive year, HIP2B² has appointed brand ambassadors in all nine provinces; affording it the opportunity to extend its national footprint, as well as propagate its message. Traditionally, subjects such as maths and science have been viewed by learners as too challenging or complex; however, those same subjects develop essential skills needed to succeed.
“Acting as the face of the brand, HIP2B2 Brand Ambassadors work closely with their communities; inspiring learners to continue with the study of maths-, science- and technology-related subjects throughout their school careers as a means of opening doors professionally in the future,” says Treasure. “Through hosting local workshops and open days, brand ambassadors illustrate how science is present in everyday life, how maths can develop innumerable skills, and how small ideas fostered by determination can grow into solutions for socio-economic problems or become lucrative businesses.”
As an extension of the brand – especially in far-reaching regions such as Mpumalanga, the Northern Cape and Limpopo – HIP2B² has appointed one dedicated teacher per province as part of its Teacher Champion Programme. “These are educators who are committed to and passionate about teaching,” explains Johan van Lill, educational consultant for and project manager of the HIP2B2 Brand Ambassador Programme. “They inspire and motivate their learners, which is why they are the best mentors HIP2B2 Brand Ambassadors can have." As a platform that speaks directly to the youth, HIP2B² delivers its message by means of various touchpoints including a dedicated magazine, website, Facebook page, MXit contact as well as the Brand Ambassador Programme. It sparks curiosity and opens up young minds to the applications of solutions-driven thinking. “Science, for example, manifests itself in everyday life: from your MP3 player to your TV. Imagine how different the world would be without so many of the items we find indispensible today.”
For more information about HIP2B2 visit www.hip2b2.com