This week I’ve been given two great opportunities.

The first was to deliver the closing keynote at the annual VITTA (Victorian IT Teachers Association) conference. Here I spoke about how to prepare our students for roles that don’t yet exist on technologies which haven’t yet been invented. Essentially my message was: Teach them the principles of computing, give them access to the tools, and most importantly, inspire them. Inspire them to what’s possible, to what’s impossible, but most of all to what our world needs.

The second was to talk to a select group of students at the University of Western Sydney about the Imagine Cup. Here again my message was simple: What’s your personal vision? How can you change your community? How can we change the world? The theme of this year’s Imagine Cup is “Imagine a world where technology solves the world’s toughest problems” and is based on the United Nations 8 Millennium Development Goals.

This morning I saw this video on a colleague’s blog (thanks Steve) and it had it’s effect on me too. The Girl Effect.

My question is: “How can we change this girl?”

Is there a solution? As the video says, the solution isn’t the Internet, Science, Government, or money – but to affect this girl, it is probably a combination of all of these things. And the journey starts with each of us – today. What is the one thing, the one idea, the one step, that you can put in motion today and not defer until you “have time?”

Maybe it’s a phone call, maybe an email, maybe a tweet, maybe a blog post. Perhaps it’s calling your friends and putting together a team for Imagine Cup 2009. Maybe it’s just going to a micro-finance site right now and investing in a girl.

We can change the world. We must change the world. As my colleague at work, Nick Hodge, says “there is no Planet B…”

Enjoy - “The Girl Effect”