Jerry is one of those passionate individuals, who never runs out of energy and ideas when doing what he likes best. Many know him as the person behind Jerry’s brain, others heard his TED talk or met him via Exo Lever Community, some characterize him as a “creative mind in tech circles”. We are privileged to have him onboard, as what we stand for here at Educatefor.life resonates well with Jerry’s interests and goals.
So, who is Jerry? During the Sprint we will see him in different roles – as an active Sprint participant with own team and a strategic advisor ready to help other teams whenever they need it. Among other things, he used to be a tech industry analyst and has heard around 400 pitches from software companies, so he is good at offering feedback and providing recommendations and is happy to play that role again.
Jerry is very passionate about learning and education, but not so much about the current
educational system, which according to him (and many others, of course, otherwise we wouldn’t be doing this) is based on mistrust, very counterproductive and has plenty of flaws.
Throughout the last 20-25 years Jerry has actively worked with trust – the interest emerged when he realized that he didn’t like the word “consumer”. Later it became obvious to him that “we all get consumerized” by, in particular, our educational system which was designed around the industrial era and aimed to create consumers and good factory workers and not “smart intelligent people”. To Jerry it is a perfect example of “design from mistrust” which destroys curiosity, creative thinking and even our identity. How to bring all that back? Jerry sees the answer in what he calls “design from trust” or, in other words, finding initiatives that work inside and outside the school system and are based on trust in children’s and adult’s curiosity and interest in finding their own ways.
Jerry sees the answer in what he calls “design from trust” or, in other words, finding initiatives that work inside and outside the school system and are based on trust in children’s and adult’s curiosity and interest in finding their own ways.
Several education-related topics occupy his mind at the moment. Different learning styles and ways to figure out the best ones for every individual (through creation of “A Sorting hat” of learning styles inspired by that of Harry Potter), scaffolding for education, establishment of “an informal network of sages reachable anyone” and more. One of the concepts to be developed and tested during the Sprint by his team is a platform or framework to either supplement or even replace the current education system. Jerry views it as an experiment which could room anything from a software or machine amplified learning to social learning where people get together and learn without being divided by age or any other “social category”. The main idea is to rethink learning and make it available to anyone who needs it at the lowest cost possible. In other words, it should be based on abundance and trust, not scarcity and mistrust, and various business models may come out of it as we proceed.
While being “heavily into Google” (using a Google phone, maps, search engine etc.) and trusting them as a company, Jerry points out, that one of the major drawbacks of living this way is “the society amnesia”. “We are stupider than we normally would be, because we are drowning in the information flood” and “we are very easy to spin because we have no long-term memory” – we have simply outsourced it to Google. So, because Google has done the job so well, “we as society have dropped our responsibility for doing more” while we could become “a wiser civilization” through learning and connecting ideas. In relation to this Jerry says: “If I could spark the creation of a platform, a space that any learner on Earth could go to and learn socially connected to other humans, that means they are going to get better jobs, be better citizens etc., I can die happy”.
If you share the same interests and would like to work with Jerry, feel free to contact him. When it comes to choosing team members, he is “very picky, but very open”.