Louise Nobes is the founder and CEO of 42 Adelaide, the first 42 campus in Australia. Enthusiastic, she’s always wanted to solve the most complex social problems by working with the community.
Hi Louise! I’ve heard you have a unique background as CEO of 42 Adelaide…
“I call myself a little crazy and very passionate. I worked as a social worker across the community in mental health, foster care, disability including health services before founding the company, KIK Innovation, six years ago. We were really working with the most disadvantaged kids and teaching them entrepreneurship and innovation skills and then investing in their business ideas. We were looking to solve the real complex issues of unemployment and particularly youth unemployment. When there’s such a tech and digital demand crisis, we went looking for the best education models that solved those two really complex issues: growing the best IT talent for the future of work and making sure that everyone was part of the jobs of the future.”
Now that 42 Adelaide is a reality, what do you get from it?
“I’m a social work thinker first. I have always strived to look for ways to change the system and for education to be so accessible to everyone. For me, 42 is probably the most significant achievement I’ve ever made. Working with Mel Stirling everyday to bring 42 to Australia, I am very proud of that: we’re just a couple of women, not millionaires, but we actually believed in 42 enough and so we built a community around us.”
What are your thoughts on the future of education?
“The future of education needs to be really thoughtful and always changing. We need to ask this question to the people that want to be educated! We have to always go back to how people want to learn. We need to do that at the youngest age possible because the older you get, the more disillusioned you become and the more stuck in structures you become. At the moment, 42 is so important for software engineers, but I’ve already been asked how you can bring 42 into some other key disciplines.”
What’s important for you in the 42 model?
“At 42, it’s definitely the inclusivity that is the strongest value to me. You can say that you’re open to all, and you can say that it’s free, but that doesn’t mean anything if people don’t come in with that diversity lens. 42’s inclusivity drives all of us to keep being better and bring more people in from different walks of life. We don’t care about the background: great minds are everywhere!”