May 16, 2021

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A pioneer in twenty-first century education


although He left Malaysia at the age of three for Australia, and award-winning education technology entrepreneur Nathaniel Deung still considers himself more Malaysian than Australian.

At the age of nineteen, the Sitiawan-born pioneer now inspires a new generation of entrepreneurs and prepares them for the 21st century through education.

As CEO of Australia-based Future Minds Network (FMN), Diong has provided entrepreneurship programs in 30 schools and universities around the world and has also influenced more than 1.5 million young people through his work projects with the Australian Curriculum and Evaluation Authority.

“We have equipped more than 11,000 young people with the essential skills to succeed in a changing job market, while helping them build their own businesses,” Nathaniel told the Sun.

FMN programs not only help young people develop skills for the future job market, but they also help build their confidence by learning from failure.

“The process of learning through experience builds their courage and shows them that all skills can be learned,” Deung explained.

His organization works with students between the ages of 13 and 18.

He added, “Students are more positive, have a resourceful, and eager to learn, knowing that they can develop talents through hard work.”

“After our programs, they gave TED lectures, ran teams of 1,000 remote volunteers, and even got them in on other companies.

In short, we provide students with essential skills, entrepreneurial mindsets, and open up a new career path.

Deung noted that systemic change is slow, especially in a complex field like education.

When FMN was first started, there weren’t many of these programs.

“ Globally, the rate of structural unemployment is increasing rapidly, as there is a huge gap between the current skills of the workforce and what employers are looking for. ”

“It is clear that there is a demand for new entrepreneurship skills but it was difficult to teach them in the current system,” Deung said.

Millions of young people struggle to find profitable work without the foundation necessary for the future.

“To me, it was illogical for something to change. And if I didn’t lead that change, who would?”

Today, there are more players entering the market because educators recognize the need.

Deung considers the boom in entrepreneurship education a step in the right direction.

He said young people today are more creative than ever, and his company plans to tap the market with a magazine called Teenpreneur, highlighting the 50 best teen entrepreneurs in the world.

“We worked with 16-year-olds to solve some of the world’s toughest challenges, interviewing Elon Musk and more. These students amaze us every day.”

The program is currently being rolled out in the UK, USA, Estonia, Finland and Australia. We are planning to venture into Asian countries in the future.

“But if you are interested in reading in school or university, we love to chat regardless, as there will be room for cooperation in the near future.”

Creating something like FNM was never part of his life plan. Like most Malaysians, Deung usually dreamed of becoming a doctor, a lawyer, or an engineer.

“ All I knew was that I wanted to do something to help the world. ”

Entrepreneurship became his “canvas” to bring about the change he wanted.

“It was the same for our students,” he said.

The serial entrepreneur has new goals, such as learning to surf, starting a venture capital company, and connecting with like-minded people like the founder of Netflix to develop new ideas.

“I have many, many goals, but my main focus this year is the Network of Future Minds.

As a young person, there is a lot of pressure to be “successful” in your twenties.

“Actually, success for everyone looks different and has no time limit. Rye bread takes two hours. Whole grains take four. Nobody will ask you to bake whole grain in two hours (unless you use Masterchef). If you do, the bread will have no time to rest.” And it won’t go up. The same goes for your flight. Take your time making something important. “