Engineer and Entrepreneur
As President of the ETH juniors during my studies, I was able to connect with many students, within and beyond my department. ETH juniors is a condensed student and work experience – it creates very strong bonds. After graduation, you enter the alumni network called ETH Seniors, which is a close knit group that stays very active.
I made some amazing friends during my time at juniors. Community and belonging is vital to everyone – during this pandemic – more than ever. I think there is so much to be tried and tested, notably in terms of formats for interaction. The ETH Circle should try what nobody else dares to try, and pilot different initiatives, both online and in person. I believe the ETH Circle should focus on involving young people to stay current, and learn from them how to build community. Online video games, for example, are replacing in-person socializing for younger generations. A trend that’s being accelerated by (corona) lockdowns and our new work/study-from-home reality. In addition, the alumni experience should not start at the end of your time at ETH, but at the beginning and follow you throughout that journey. It should be clear that there’s an awesome community waiting for you after your graduation.
My biggest wish for ETH is to put its entire teaching and research content online and make it readily available to anyone on the internet, for free. Education is the master key to making everyone better off. ETH shouldn’t keep that precious resource locked way. Let ETH’s knowledge spread freely. This is paramount during times when the scientific method itself is under attack by people who decide that their personal opinion bears more weight than data. It’s also the best way to have impact – by broadcasting online for free, a professor’s knowledge, ideas and passion for science can reach millions of students instead of just 50 sitting in a classroom. That means more recognition and visibility for ETH as an academic institution, research organization and brand on a truly global scale with truly global impact.