Posted Tue, 16 Jan: I know this is a bit late (SORRY) but better now then never.
Words can’t almost describe how I feel and what this trip has done for me but I’ll try.
Having been back now for a week I’ve had a lot of time to look back and reflect on everything I did and experienced, and boy, was that a lot. This Trip has completely changed everything for me, from my mindset, to my Ideas and thought process, even down to my daily routine. I still wake up at 5 am like I did in the States but thats not a bad thing I guess. This trip has given me direction of where I want to go and where I’m going and I can’t wait. Things I am now constantly thinking of now are; #YOUCANLEARNANYTHING (Khan Academy), Stay True to yourself (Inflection.com), There are no such thing as excuses (Renaissance Leadership) and If you want to be extraordinary stop being ordinary (IDEO). These sayings are going to be incorporated into my everyday life in ways I am yet to find out but for sure they will be there plus couple others. I can’t begin to explain what this trip has and is still doing for me. I now have contacts for life in the Valley who I know will be able help/mentor me get into business when I get the proper training & or create something huge. (Which is hopefully soon!!). But until then my plan from here is to get High School done with the best grades I can get, let as many people know about this experience as possible, make my ideas from thoughts to reality and help make this Experience available to as many people as possible. The best part of the whole trip was when I found my kickstart drive to recreate something old and make it brand new, fresh and clean. I came to this realization at Yelp after I was told that a certain feature wasn’t available in New Zealand but in saying that I noticed that this was a recurring theme in the companies but for some reason at Yelp it hit me. So hopefully I will have made an app by the end of the year, this also tying in as on of my action points from the trip.
Apart from the key learnings and ideals, I’ve met some incredible people, people who are just like you and me but these people took risks and made it big from CEO’s to NZ interns who took a chance and worked their butts off to get where they are who are passionate, inspiring, encouraging and one thing from everyone we meet is that they were very welcoming. But the best people who no matter what I’ll remember the most are the incredible bunch of guys that I embarked on this trip with. You guys are amazing and you guys made the trip what it was.
Toby: You boy genius starting your own business at age 15, that’s amazing, and it’s still going strong and getting stronger. It was a awesome getting to know you and picking your mind on certain business ventures. Your going places man don’t look back.
Maihi: You are so full of excitement, joy and I found you to be a daily source of motivation your such a great person to be around and it has been a absolute pleasure getting to know you. I wish you all the best for the future and I hope you work hard at UNI your going to do exemplary because you’re not ordinary you’re extraordinary and don’t you forget that.
Liam: It was awesome to have you one the trip cause it meant I knew at least one person out of the group it was a blast getting to know you better. You are such an out their thinker for someone your age and I know what ever to do/plan to do you will achieve it and then some. Can’t wait to present to the school what we’ve learned, looking forward to talking when we get back to school.
Carym: you were such a bubbly character to be around you were always keen to see what companies were up to with their creativity and I know that you’ll get a job back in the valley working for IDEO or Facebook I bet ya. You’re an amazing person who’s going places so don’t ever give up and remember if it works do more, and if it fails try again.
Luke: you are such an intelligent guy who I expect to see back in the Valley working for at least one of the companies we saw, (hey maybe even Apple) as I know they were all very interested in you. That’s because they see you, your potential and that you’re going to be something big. Looking forward to hearing about your future adventures.
Saia: You’re motivated, smart and just an allrounder kind of guy who is going places I see you as a leader in the future if you take aboard everything you learned in America. You were an awesome roommate and it was great getting to know you.
All the best and don’t be a stranger.
Gabe: You were a ball of energy that was for sure and did get a bit to much sometimes but i’ll let you off cause you always made me laugh. Your a smart, passionate young man who I expect to see big things from. Make sure you keep up your action points and follow them through they will make a difference for sure. Can’t wait to see what you, Saia and Jason do to your high school when you get back.
Jason: I loved your passion for teaching and looking for alternate ways of learning that benefits everyone not just the set standard. You are an amazing guy who I had the pleasure to get to know. I know that when you get back to school they’re in for some big surprises with all the new and innovative ideas you have in store.
Simon: I can’t say how much it has meant to me to have the chance to get to know you the last week. You are an amazing person who has such an incredible passion for everything you do whether that be for your business’s, Dilworth or for your family you are a great role model who I’ve really looked up to on this trip. I can’t wait to get back to school and share these ideas and vision that myself, Liam and yourself have for the school. Thank you for coming on this journey with all of us you have certainly left an impact. Thank you Simon and your fellow trustees for making this opportunity available for Liam and I, and for believing in our the both us and having that extra spot for Liam.
Andrew: One of the most selfless, thoughtful, generous persons that I know you single handily put this itinerary together reaching out to all your connection in high places to make sure that this trip is the most unique experience a young person can get. Your Vision for the young people of today is something else that is not widely heard of and I believe you should be highly commended on not just this trip but everything you do. Because of this opportunity I know what I’m going to be doing in life and how i’m going to get there. I can’t begin to thank you enough for what you’ve done. Thank you.
Also I must mention the Dilworth X-Change for also making this opportunity available for the students at Dilworth and with backing in funding for myself and Liam to go. I would also like to thank all my friends, family, teachers who supported me both applying for this once in a life time experience and during.
This is Harrison Hill Signing off
(But I’ll be back soon)