Originally from Canada, Coralie has been living in Germany for the past 7 years. Passionate about women’s issues, social equality, and human rights, she has been volunteering and interning internationally on related projects while finishing her sociology degree. Now having launched her online business and “Years of Change”, she has been working day and night to build herself an exciting future.
Alishba Imran is sixteen years old and a student at The Knowledge Society. If you recall from last week’s article, we spoke to Isabella Grandic who kindly introduced us to Alishba, an incredibly interesting young leader. In our interview, Alishba shares some of her current projects, hopes, inspirations and, of course, tips on how to tap into your personal potential.
CB: Tell us about you and your projects.
Alishba Imran : Of course. As you know, my name is Alishba and I am sixteen years old. I joined The Knowledge Society to learn more about our modern world, and it has been an incredible experience so far! The Knowledge Society teaches us about machine learning, blockchain, artificial intelligence and nanotechnology. The ultimate goal is to learn how to solve big problems in the world using these.
CB: That sounds wonderful. Do you have a specific field you are focusing on?
AI: Yes, I am very passionate about sustainability and I want to impact the world and people. My goal is actually to start my own company that works towards solving major world problems. For example, I currently focus on using technology to solve fertility-related issues around the world. I work with biosensors, which function with artificial intelligence; these can figure out what is happening within the body in real-time. Issues like diseases and complications, which are related to fertility are understudied; we do not know most of their causes, therefore even less their solutions! I also am working in the health care sector to track counterfeit medicine in Least Developed Countries.
CB: Wow, that’s really impressive! And how do you think you will continue these projects in the future?
AI: For now, we are still at the beginning. We are working on creating a platform that can be used to track women’s fertility and to track counterfeit medicine, so this is a big focal point at the moment. Aside from this, I am not sure yet about my projects coming up. I know that I would like to launch a few startups in the future and to focus on the ones in healthcare or energy. But this can all change, in five years I will be 21, who really knows what will happen until then!
CB: That’s a great mentality. Speaking of age, do you think it is something that has held you back? For example, has your age pushed people to tell you that you are too young or inexperienced? If so, how did you deal with it?
AI: Actually, being young and in my position is an immense advantage. Because I am young, people expect me to ask questions. Most are actually eager to help you find out new things. However, that also means that I am my own enemy; the barriers are in my head. I have had to work on reaching out to people to ask for help. This has really grown my confidence because I had to learn how to get past my fears, get over my internal barriers and finally had to learn how to tap into my own potential.
CB: That’s interesting, how did you do that?
AI: I did a few things. For example, I started sending out daily updates to my close friends and partners. I would tell them about what I have been working on, what I did today and the day before, and more. This was a way of keeping me accountable and made sure I was a lot more productive. I also started to read more books on topics I really enjoyed. I read Sapiens, Thinking Fast and Slow, and a range of books on psychology and human happiness. I find that learning through reading is a great way of utilising my potential.
Speaking to Alishba was inspiring and I hope you were inspired too! It is incredible to have such young women being leaders and taking sizable roles within an industry which tends to be dominated by men. I cannot wait to see what Alishba does next!