Igniting Surrey youth

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He developed a ring tone only young people can hear, and this week, used his story to spark passion in Surrey teens.

Aanikh Kler, a 15-year-old entrepreneur from Vancouver launched the smart phone app UndrtheRadr last year. The application, which was featured on CBC’s Dragon’s Den, allows users to download ring tones that only people under 21 can hear. Kler’s venture also supports Free The Children, an initiative to educate and empower youth worldwide.

Kler was one of the keynote speakers at Ignite 2014: Inspiration Starts Here, which more than 1,200 Surrey high school students attended at Princess Margaret Secondary last week.

“Being able to speak to my peer group at Princess Margaret Secondary School is a privilege and an honour. I hope they take away something that will inspire them to create change in their lives,” said Kler.

Ignite 2014, a joint initiative between the Surrey School  District’s Safe Schools  department and the  Association of South Asian  Professionals (ASAP), was  intended to expose students to  various professionals and  career choices in an array of  disciplines.

Other keynote speakers included Sam Thiara, association director of undergraduate community relations at Simon Fraser University’s Beedie School of Business and Dr. Surinder Janda.

As well, students attended three different 30-minute sessions of their choice, with 40 panelists from a variety of career backgrounds, including medicine, law enforcement, social services, business, media and education.

“It was an engaging day and it was great seeing the enthusiasm of the presenters,” said Jeff Randhawa, with the Safe Schools department. “Most importantly, the students found it to be valuable experience to learn about a variety of career choices.”

Jindy Bhalla, president of the ASAP, said it was a pleasure for the adults to act as role models for the youth.

“Ignite 2014 was a wonderful opportunity for students to explore and learn about potential career paths from professionals in the community sharing their career experiences first hand,” said Bhalla.

Anyone who would like to be involved in similar events in the future can contact ASAP’s Harvey Kooner at hkooner@shaw.ca

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