How often do you stop to think about why you do the work you do every day? For a while, I didn’t know why. Why was I so stuck on online office hours, or helping someone share their notes, or getting some students to host their own study session? Sure education tools are important, but it wasn’t until I thought about the “why” that I realized how life changing this could be. I didn’t realize how much I care about whether the world is getting the knowledge it deserves. But when education has the power to change quite literally everything around us, to me it becomes a basic human necessity, like shelter or electricity. That study session becomes a place for the shy kid in the back of the class to finally join the conversation. The online office hours becomes the only way that a single mom supporting herself through college is able to get her homework done between jobs. The notes that are shared becomes the saving grace of a student who was too depressed to get out of bed that morning. That’s why it’s so important to me.
When we’re surrounded by so much pain, violence, and anger in the world, the grand solution appears to be more bleak each day. We forget that the power of knowledge and education is our only guarantee to a different, better life. So imagine if we could not only educate the entire world, but also connect it. If we harnessed the power of technology to connect every brain in the world, it feels silly to think that we couldn’t solve even the most terrifying of problems. The movement would feel slow at first, like asking rain to fill up a lake after a drought. Then one day, after countless rains, we’ll realize the lake that once seemed so empty and so difficult to fill was just that, full. That’s exactly how education will save our planet. It’ll be a slow battle, but if we give it all the resources we have, we’ll win.
So that’s why I’m doing this. That’s why I care, and why I think you should, too. We owe it to ourselves and to one another to try our best to make this world a better place in any way that we can. To me, connecting a classroom, a place where the purest form of magic can happen, is the only way I can think of how to do it. The thought that maybe one day, we’ll connect enough minds, thoughts, and knowledge to cure cancer, save the rainforests, end world hunger, and who knows what else. The lakes seem impossible to fill right now, but we still have to try.
The world that we live in, that we are so afraid of, it only seeks one thing from us: to learn more about it. We owe it to ourselves to learn every single thing we can about this place and give it our best shot before we decide that we did everything we could, before we accept that there is no hope left. If we know the world is only going to keep getting bigger, then we have to adapt alongside it. Technology should be seen as a blessing that has allowed us to scale education so that we can include every possible person in this very necessary discussion. We have to take the tools that we’ve been given and make something wonderful out of them, so that we leave this place better than how we found it. I think we often forget in our day to day lives that the “purpose” we search so hard for is more simple than we realize: to make the world a better place. It’s the best answer to “why” that I have ever found. Maybe saving the world starts with asking ourselves the most simple question of all.
Want to know what I’m talking about? Check out Nectir, my ed-tech startup.