Co-Founder MyMachine awarded Innovator of The Year by HundrED

At the final day of the HundrED Global Innovation Summit 2020, Saku Tuominen, announced live from Helsinki, Finland, that the Award for HundrED Innovator of The Year goes to Piet Grymonprez, Co-Founder and Managing Director of the MyMachine Global Foundation. 

This is how HundrED announced the award:

At last weeks #HundrEDSummit we announced the coveted title of HundrED Innovator of the Year ? This innovator has been selected for the HundrED Spotlight…

“At last weeks HundrED Global Innovation Summit 2020, we announced the coveted title of HundrED Innovator of the Year .?

This innovator has been selected for the HundrED Spotlight on Creativity and the Global Collection for the second year in a row. Their passion for education is undeniable. They are continuously working for the pursuit of education that puts imagination, creativity and hope at the centre of learning. We have loved working with this individual and look forward to supporting their work in the future. With this, our HundrED Innovator of the year is: Piet Grymonprez.

Piet is the Co-Founder of MyMachine. With its unique methodology, MyMachine enables young people to learn that having ideas is fun and essential, and what it takes to bring an(y) idea to life.”

Thank you Saku Tuominen and all at HundrED -Lasse Leponiemi, Pukhraj Ranjan, Chris Petrie, Mariah O’Mara, Romayne Javangwe, Katija Aladin, Danny Gilliland, Heidi Gärkman -, and the HundrED Global Community for this incredible honour!

Piet wants to share some comments on this award:

It is with enormous gratitude that I have -completely unaware of what was going to happen- witnessed Saku Tuominen and Mariah O’Mara reveal this award, live last week on the last day of the HundrED Global Innovation Summit 2020. This award is for MyMachine.

Coming from HundrED makes it truly unique. Because HundrED is a thriving global community, uniting people working in schools, universities, industry, foundations, governments, the OECD, the World Economic Forum, and United Nations, all of them working towards the same goal -improving the education system around the world.

Last week, the HundrED Academy – consisting of more than 150 academia, industry and education experts from around the world – awarded MyMachine for the second time in two consecutive years, to be on the HundrED Global List of Brightest Innovations in the world. This selection is the result of the analysis of more than 5000 potential education innovation organizations from around the world.

As if it wasn’t enough, the same Academy members, together with additional experts of the LEGO Foundation, selected MyMachine for the HundrED Global Spotlight on Creativity (in collaboration with the LEGO Foundation), announcing MyMachine as one of the 20 Best In Fostering Creativity.

And then came this fantastic title. While it mentions my name, this is not about me. It is equally all about my two Co-Founders Filip Meuris and Jan Despiegelaere, our board and global advisors, and our genuinely amazing MyMachine Global Team: thank you to every one of you, for your genius, your heart and soul, your drive and creativity that makes MyMachine shine so much!
Aagje, Maïté, Jeremy, Chimell, Mitja, Matej, Mihajela, Ana, Miguel, Ana Sofia, André, Cecilia, Carlos, Humberto, Idunn, Inger, Marit, Merete, Adrian, Øystein, Zofia, Hanele, Jan, Veronika, Laura, Benjamin, Nathalie, Sema, Priscilla, Ronald, Rik, Annabel, Marleen, Frank, Griet, Evelyn, and Kristof.

I can’t write about all of this without having Sir Ken Robinson in mind, as he was such an inspiration to many of us. We took pride in the words of Kate Robinson last week, at HundrED’s Global Tribute to Sir Ken Robinson, as she showed us a way forward to continue what we do since the work is not done. As emotional as it was, we also took pride to be featured in the official tribute video, alongside equally impressive innovators from around the world. Thank you so much all at HundrED for the heart-felt tribute.
We still feel the energy of collaborating with Sir Ken, when we were working on our book for which he agreed to write the foreword. His endorsement for MyMachine -in that 1000 word foreword- will stay with us for all of the futures of MyMachine. I still remember how much joy Sir Ken found in making it exactly one thousand words. For us, it felt and still feels like one thousand profound pats on our backs.

And while this was indeed a milestone in our history, it wasn’t the only one so far. We would be doing this historic moment in the history of MyMachine an injustice, without also highlighting the other exceptional people who drive us forward thanks to their faith in us and the authority with which they do so. Hank Nourse at The New York Academy of Sciences, Tom Vander Ark at Getting Smart, Peter Gamwell, Garry Salole, Angela Haydel Debarger at the William & Flora Hewlett Foundation, Edward P. Clapp, Christina Smiraglia and Amy Kamarainen at Harvard University, Sir Richard Branson, United Nations WSA, Designmanagement Europe, Forbes, The Qatar Foundation, Reimagine Education and many others, including companies and other funders that support our work. And of course: HundrED!

In the end, the most significant milestones and rewards we get, are those we get each day when yet another child invents her or his dream machine and confides in our methodology (to learn) to bring it to life in collaboration with older students. That is what counts most. Because each of those students in primary, secondary and higher education that can join MyMachine with their class, have the opportunity to take this skill with them into their future lives. No matter the scope, whether you have an idea to better your personal life, local community, or a solution to a global issue, it all starts with having the confidence that your ideas matter! That your ideas are worth giving them the time to grow! That your ideas can be brought to life, because you’ve learned it is possible by collaborating with others and respecting each other’s talents, by being persistent and resilient. While being called naive by some, we take pride in saluteing all of you, creative and entrepreneurial souls, who show us that it is not in the words you say, but foremost in bringing your ideas to life, that enables one to make our communities and the world at large, a better place.

That is why we believe that learning to be creative, learning how to bring your idea to life should be central in each education system on the planet. If education would only focus on knowledge transfer, it would not add to human intelligence. Because it is only creativity, fueled with curiosity, that can challenge the status quo, push the boundaries of knowledge and raise the bar of human intelligence.

Thank you to all of you.