written by Florian Becker, Aiducator team Zurich; edited by Kerstin Hockmann, Aiducation Communications.

On the 26th of October guests of our third annual Aiducation Impact Dinner in Zurich came together at the ETH Dozentenfoyer. Scholars, donors, partners and the Swiss Aiducation team met to enjoy an inspiring and relaxing evening at a great location to celebrate another successful year of the Aiducation storyline.

When I joined the dinner around 6:15 pm, the spacious room was already full of people; all of them dressed to the nines and lively talking with each other. After a quick welcoming marathon, I hustled out to the terrace; it is not every day that you can enjoy the sunset from such a magnificent viewpoint! Only a few enjoyable deep breaths later, the program started.
Introduced by our splendid moderator and former Aiducator Amelia Meier, Dr. Bjørn Johansson (CEO of a leading executive search company) started the evening with his speech about “Tomorrow’s talents for impact”. All our 120 guests concentrated on his thoughts and conclusions about the future-leading generation.

His words were followed by the impressions of three Synpulse consulting associates and CEO Christoph Nützenadel during their Project Management Academy which they had co-organized with Aiducation in December 2015 in Manila (Philippines). Once more, they emphasized the unexpected mutual learning experience: The Philippine pupils learned a lot from them , but the learning experience had just been as significant on the mentors’ side. It was more than obvious that the academy was an absolutely fulfilling experience for everyone.

After these encouraging words , everyone had a lot of input for discussions during dinne r. A buffet of two yummy main courses, and a big salad bar together with various soups was on the menu. With such a delicious selection of fine food, it was hard to leave a bit space for the later desserts. Surely no one had to go home with an empty stomach this day.

When everyone leaned full and satisfied back into their chairs after the dinner, AiduAlumni Marie Gene Cruz from the Philippines started telling her own personal story of how she is managing to pursue her dream of becoming a doctor. Her talk was humorous and entertaining, but at the same time professional heart-touching.

“I knew I was in love from the very first time I set foot in Switzerland – and in Europe – on the 15th of October. I fell in love with the place, with its enchanting architecture, dazzling autumn colors, and misty atmosphere. But most especially, I fell in love with the people – their warm welcome, their passion for education, and their being open to be inspired by people like me who came from the other side of the world with a totally different story from theirs. Thank you to Aiducation International for allowing me to experience this new kind of love I have found in Switzerland.”

Everyone fell in love with this amazing ,smart Philippine lady; she is truly an inspiring person. Currently, Marie was doing a short internship at Gesundheitszentrum Fricktal with her AiduAlumni-colleague Sora Mudha from Kenya, who then started sharing his story of how the Aiducation scholarship changed his life as an African nomad. The photos of his tent made me imagine how different Sora’s daily routine might have looked like compared to my usual daily life s as a pupil. It really keeps you thinking…

Sora and Marie are only two of 1,175 AiduTalents that are going to make a difference in society. “Let’s try to reach the 1,200 by the end of the year”, CEOAiducation Switzerland Matthias Meier underlined at the end of the evening. The thirteen donated scholarships that were taken together during the event did their part of making this come true.

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