Setting out on a learning marathon…

Over the past six months Roxana Bacian and I have been setting up Enrol Yourself, a platform for harnessing the potential of peer groups, infinite content and a networked world for personalised, flexible and affordable lifelong learning. We’ve been refining and communicating our ideas and reaching out to as many people as possible in the hope that a group will join us on this learning adventure, bringing our pilot to life and proving demand for a new kind of ongoing learning.

We will kick of on September 17th with thirteen participants, of which we are two. A huge thank you to the eleven learners who have agreed to join us. Together we span a diversity of interests and backgrounds from science to marketing, performance, visual design, service design, business, entrepreneurship, sustainability, community organising and learning experience. There a tonne of overlaps when it comes to our learning questions and everyone shares an interest in the social impact of their work.

We will be documenting and sharing our journey, our thoughts and our insights along the way, but for now, meet our pilot group;

Ali Norrish is a UX researcher and fledgling experience designer, creating empowering learning experiences in campaigns for economic system change. Now designing UX for the Economy with and organising playful experiences about what money means. Background in digital learning projects, branding and communications. Keen sweeper and lover of games, greetings card addict.

Learning marathon: Ali will be exploring how UX and facilitation can contribute to grassroots system change movements.

Amal Hmayed has extensive experience working in the public and private sectors, mainly in the areas of strategy design, organisational development, capacity building and policy reform. She is currently enrolled in the Service Design MA program at the Royal College of Art where she is learning about innovative tools and techniques to create impactful and sustainable solutions that fulfill users’ needs in any sector.

Learning marathon: Amal will focus on how design of learning experiences can engender collective consciousness in children and youth.

Belinda Boakye is the founder of Cultural Agency Collective; a business consultancy working with arts organisations and social enterprises to develop their commercial performance and sustainability. Through her work she aims to democratise the playing field between big business and more meaningful grassroots enterprise. Her background is in arts, entertainment marketing and business development.

Learning marathon: Belinda will deepen her understanding of how marketing and communications practices can inspire positive activism.

Christopher Watson is the founder of TESS, the world’s first Zoo School. He has a degree in Zoology from John Moore’s University, England, a Master’s degree in Evolutionary Biology from Uppsala University, Sweden, and studied toward a PhD in eco-behavioural evolution at the University of Valencia. He has been designing TESS in his head since he was eight years old. Christopher is now building a collective of minds and talent from around the world to make his dream a reality.

Learning marathon: Chris will be developing a curriculum and learning experiences that will nurture a love of learning, empathy and compassion for nature.

Clemence Tanzi studied law for 6 years, but after completing her masters in London realised she really did not want to be a lawyer. She is now the project coordinator at qLegal, a law clinic for startups and entrepreneurs within Queen Mary University of London. In her spare time, Clem enjoys trying new things, British countryside pubs, surfing, coding, learning Italian and is setting out to develop her own social enterprise.

Learning marathon: Clemence will develop and test a social enterprise which will aim to enhance career and study prospects for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Daniel Ford is currently starting an edible insect business Chipper — selling cricket powder as an alternative protein source, which started as a project during his MA in sustainable development with Forum for the Future. He is fascinated by how community organising can lead to behaviour change for sustainable development, and is excited to explore new models of education that further the pursuit of sustainable systems.

Learning marathon: Daniel will be exploring how the commons and community organising principles can produce behaviour change for sustainability.

Ellie Pritchard, formerly a Year Here fellow and Kingston University graduate, is currently working as a visual communication tutor, graphic recorder and designer. For the last year she has been co-ordinating the National Art & Design Saturday Club at Kingston and tutoring on the Art & Design Foundation course.

Learning marathon: Ellie will focus on exploring the accessibility of design within society and how design education can play a part in shaping it.

Fan Sissoko is a social designer. For the last five years, she has worked at Innovation Unit, a social enterprise using human-centred design to improve public services in the UK, leading on design research and multimedia storytelling projects. She is now about to set-up her own practice, focusing on what the role of design is in creating more hope and empathy in today’s society.

Learning marathon: Fan will explore storytelling as an approach for developing the empathy, confidence and capabilities needed by people if they are to participate in creative social action.

Laura Billings is the Business and Community manager at Edspace. She is an expert in systems re-design and platform building, creating projects, ventures and institutions which thrive on mass participation. She was previously director of the Civic Systems Lab, leading on The Open Works project to build a demonstration neighbourhood and participatory ecosystem in south London. She is co-founder of Trade School London, a barter based learning cooperative.

Learning marathon: Laura will be questioning how a small local business (a micro hotel in Whitechapel), can become a local, community hub within a neighbourhood.

Robbie Bates is a social designer who is passionate about the power of people, technology and data to positively change the way we live, work and play. He is currently Design Director at design and innovation agency Uscreates, where he focuses on using creative approaches to improve health outcomes and experiences.

Learning marathon: Robbie will build a greater understanding of the interplay between design and business.

Roxana Bacian is co-founder of Enrol Yourself. She has 5 years experience of leading service and visual design projects in-house and independently. Most recently visual designer for FutureGov and previously service designer at Snook. She moved to the UK 6 years ago from Romania to study an MA in Communication Design at Kingston University.

Learning marathon: Roxana will look at how she can use movement and performance to explore, express and overcome limiting thinking habits.

Tim Ruffles is a coder who loves to explore data, visual creativity and maths. He shares what he’s learned via conference speaking and training other developers. He runs the Functional Javascript and Philosophy Walk meetups.

Learning marathon: Tim will explore how data visualisation can inform debate in the new ‘public square’ of Twitter.

Zahra Davidson is co-founder of Enrol Yourself. She is interested in participatory learning experiences and the role of learning in reaching for sustainability. She is part of the System Innovation Lab team at Forum for the Future where she has been working on the development of their School of System Change. Before that she was designing, communicating and delivering learning programmes at Year Here and Snook.

Learning marathon: Zahra will build her ability to develop and produce learning products and experiences in response to individual user and wider societal needs.

Follow our progress on Twitter, Facebook or Medium. Applications reopen January 2017 for a second group to set out on their learning marathon.

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