These days ChatGPT is literally on every social media channel that you open. It has truly changed the way we create content, improve processes, and learn. The implication of AI is absolutely massive as companies and institutions look for ways to integrate AI into their systems. But what do future jobs look like? How do students today can prepare for tomorrow?
Waterloo-based tech startup 1Mentor is bridging the gap between academic institutions and workplaces. Using AI, 1Mentor provides real-time recommendations and upskilling opportunities to students. We sat down with Esteban Veintimilla, Co-founder and CEO to discuss how 1Mentor is changing the way students are preparing for future jobs that don’t exist yet.
What was the inspiration behind 1Mentor?
As technology continues to shape society and drive change, recent graduates face a challenging job market and fast-changing industries. Unfortunately, this creates a gap between what businesses want and what institutions teach, leaving many learners needing guidance to align their skills with their career interests, articulate their talents in the job application process, and identify promising career paths.
1Mentor was founded by three classmates whose professional experience included working directly with students and who recognized the need for personalized training and guidance to succeed in a changing job market. Through hands-on efforts, we found that providing up-to-date information about the right skills, tools, and knowledge directly to students significantly increased the number of students hired for placement.
However, we wanted to do this at scale. So by leveraging the power of cutting-edge AI, we were able to provide real-time recommendations and upskilling opportunities to students and data to academic institutions on a large scale.
Today, 1Mentor partners with higher education organizations worldwide to help students reach their full potential, regardless of their background or circumstances. So whether you’re a driven student ready to find your career path or an educator seeking innovative solutions, 1Mentor is the resource you need to succeed in the future of work.
How does 1Mentor help educational institutions and students?
1Mentor’s platform offers personalized career planning and upskilling opportunities for students based on their personal and professional interests and skillset. Powered by data from over 100 million job postings, we can tailor our recommendations and insights on employer’s demands for every student and institution.
In this way, 1Mentor also enables higher education decision-makers to analyze industry demand and student skills supply, identify skill gaps in curricula, and adapt their teaching to serve their students’ needs and career success. By and large, supporting institutions to stay in sync with industry demands and better prepare their students for the future of work.
We see a lot of buzz around AI. What’s the role of AI in your platform?
AI plays a central role in 1Mentor’s platform. Right from the data ingestion process, we use AI to understand the skills, tools, and knowledge required by industry. Similarly, when looking at learners’ unique skill sets and interests, AI allows us to provide each of them with tailored recommendations on preparing for their occupations of interest and other relevant careers to explore.
We leverage AI throughout the platform to provide a personalized experience to each learner and allow them to evolve at the same pace as industry. We are confident that AI will continue to revolutionize society in the coming years and are committed to staying at the forefront of its use in professional preparation and career enhancement services.
1Mentor Cofounders from left to right: Martin Serrano, Diego Robles, Esteban Veintimilla
What’s the traction been like with 1Mentor?
1Mentor is excited to have worked with learners at all stages of their higher education journey this year, including first-year students, upcoming undergrads, and master students. We are proud to partner and work with leading institutions such as the University of Alberta, Purdue University – ranked among the top 100 universities in the world and top 5 in engineering in the US, the University of Waterloo, – ranked top 1 in Innovation and Experiential Learning according to Maclean Education, and to count with the support of Arizona State University – the most innovative university in the USA. These partnerships have enabled us to provide students with the highest quality of career enhancement services and get ready for our product launch in 2023. Besides, we are closely working with other leading institutions to expand to LATAM, India, and the UK, where we see vast potential. Overall, we have seen interest from all corners of the world, solidifying that the problem we are tackling is a global issue.
What’s next for 1Mentor? Are there exciting partnerships, products or features we can look forward to?
We are excited to announce that in early 2023, we will be launching our B2C platform, giving learners from all backgrounds access to our platform and empowering them to prepare themselves for their careers of interest. Additionally, we plan to strengthen our partnerships and deepen our presence with our current partners. We are firm believers that by working with educational institutions, such as our existing partners, we can create a sustainable system of collaboration that allows academia to evolve with industry in sync. Furthermore, this upcoming year, we will expand our reach beyond North America to institutions in Europe, Asia, and Latin America, working with learners and faculty to transform higher education. Don’t miss this opportunity to join us on this exciting journey and sign up for our beta launch on our social media accounts!
What is one piece of advice you have for founders and aspiring entrepreneurs?
Start by identifying a problem that you are passionate about solving.This will allow you to have a contagious motivation that attracts top talent. At our core, what we build is cutting-edge technology and solutions because everyone in 1Mentor is passionate about the vision. This allows us to staymotivated as a teamto keep going when things get tough and also to attract customers who also share that vision and passion to innovate.. This has been a key lesson in our journey and continues to hold for years after the inception of 1Mentor.
How can people find out more about 1Mentor?
Visit our website to learn more about our story, case studies, and relevant career-readiness information in our blog. Additionally, we are active on LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook, all under the handle 1Mentor.Inc.
Also, please feel free to reach out to us directly at info at 1mentor.io. We are constantly looking to connect with experts, educators, students, investors, and other founders, to share insights, explore possibilities, and to keep growing.