Student stories: Laura Youngson wins TEDx Melbourne Open Mic Night

16th August 2017

Our community is full of driven people who dream big. Our own The University of Melbourne Master of Entrepreneurship student, Laura Youngson is a great example of this.

This year, she developed Equal Playing Field. Frustrated by the underrepresentation, underreporting and undervaluing of women’s sport, Youngson founded initiative and took a team of 60 women from 25 different nationalities to the top of Mt Kilimanjaro where they staged the world’s highest all-female soccer match.

After completing that journey, she pitched her story at TEDxMelbourne‘s first ever open mic night….and won! We couldn’t be prouder.

WHY ARE YOU PURSING ENTREPRENEURSHIP?

“After several years running social enterprises and micro-businesses alongside an international management career in Government and private sector, I’m now ready to take a more intensive approach to developing my own enterprise.

Having worked all over the world (Brazil, Mozambique, Azerbaijan, UAE) with NGO’s, not-for-profit’s, government agencies and social enterprises, I’m incredibly driven to address some of the most challenging problems of our generation such as climate change, unemployment, and skills shortages.

I’ve brought many of my social and environmental ideas to life before, but now I want to focus my skills and knowledge to develop an innovative and profitable business fit for the 21st century, built on strong sense of purpose, values and business acumen.

Previously, I was the General Manager of a hospitality business in remote Mozambique and gained a vital understanding of cash flow, planning and logistics in a difficult environment. I also set up and ran an NGO in Ghana focusing on the provision of quality science education. I see a lot of opportunity for my science skills and passion to have a positive impact on communities and problems that need our attention. The structure and guidance of a program, such as the Master of Entrepreneurship is helping me bring my ideas to life on a steady and scalable commercial foundation.”

Laura is also a recipient of Amanda Coote’s  $25,000 Impact Entrepreneurship Scholarship “The scholarship enables me to dive fully into the program and immerse myself in the network of ideas, people and impact. I can work to develop myself and become the best business leader I can be. It’s invaluable to have the support of an entrepreneur who has been through the business cycle before and can provide real world advice along the journey.”

To learn more about our incredible student community and what they’re working on, visit us on Open Day, Sunday 20 August, for a fun day of mini-masterclasses, music and networking!

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