IAmNYAS: Ankit Shah
A Q&A with Junior Academy Mentor Ankit Shah.
What are your students working on?
Our team Aquavitae worked on developing a water filtration system to provide underserved people with access to clean water. Students have created a prototype that cleans biological and chemical contaminants and is a portable solution to one's water needs.
What surprised you about your students?
My students were industrious and had a plethora of ideas which kind of excited me as well as surprised me, partly because the ideas generated during our brainstorming sessions were great and needed further channeling to turn into a viable product.
What surprised you about your mentoring experience?
The mentoring experience was great. Despite not having necessary technical background/experience with water filtration systems, I was surprised to find out the challenges in this field and scope of improvement possibilities that lie within this area of interest.
What kind of growth did you see in your students?
Students were more collaborative in the later stages of the challenge and took responsibilities well. They were well organised in terms of the task allocations and implementation. Their ideas were well structured and they had enough reason to back up their ideas.
What kind of growth did you experience yourself?
Over the course of challenge, my managerial skills improved drastically. Apart from gaining expertise in unexplored domains, I was able to catch up with research work done by each member of the team and provided feedback on key improvements to their ideas.
Ability to adjust to a global setting with team collaboration from Europe, US, and India was a challenge, however it was easy going in the latter half of the competition.
Anything else you'd like to share?
Thank you to the Global STEM Alliance for conducting this challenge. It was a great experience working with young bright minds and creating solutions addressing global needs.