We are a unique and unprecedented organization, as a “sector intermediary”, challenging the norms and tolerances of traditional corporate and foundation funding sources. Our agenda is hugely complex, and not aimed at solving problems but creating solutions. Our view and definition of youth is not as a “problem” or being “at-risk” but as a “solution” in an “at-risk” society. We operate in a paradigm that presumes our outmoded school system will absolutely change from 6 period days to 24/7 virtual learning within a radically new economic framework we call “Digitalism.”
The possibilities and realities of learning, creating, producing, socializing will know no traditional limitations of space, time and experience. Our children, formally educated or not, will live out that transformation, as did the children at the outset of the 20th Century faced with their Century’s new technology and mass new immigration.
It is incumbent on visionary and bold leadership to anticipate the challenges ahead, with no familiar blueprint, call on new alliances and interdependent leaders, face entrenched and often hostile opposition to changes to the status quo that are irrevocable, and inspire boundless optimism and innovation to advance human beings. Intergenerational power relations will absolutely change, and traditional “community” will be replaced by boundaryless productive “studio” communities. The “arts” must be made a central strut within Science Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) to STEAM) because design, beauty, taste, aesthetics are fundamental to all human endeavor and success.
The Tower of Youth stretches to integrate these perspectives, axioms, and challenges in its program work, aiming everything it does towards building a new ‘citizen’, an empowered youth organization, a global vision and a new economy … Never spectacle or just ‘human doing’ for its own sake, each TOY activity and program element must have a paradigmatic and transformational role or it is worthless.
William Bronston, MD