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Will.I.Am on Making Tech the New Celebrity

image via BBC
image via BBC

Will.I.Am is one member of the pop group The Black Eyed Peas. He’s also a business star in the technology field. Intel Corp. appointed him director of creative innovation a couple of years ago. He recorded “Reach for The Stars” at NASA, which broadcast for the first time from the Mars Curiosity Rover.

As Will says in a recent BBC interview, “You know who has more money than Jay Z? Mark Zuckerberg.” And that’s the message we should get out to kids. While society, glossy magazines, commercials, etc. are pushing celebrity, the reality that there are plenty of folks making a lot more money in tech fields than on the silver screen isn’t being passed on to students as the “real life successes.” (Not that success is piles of money, but that if you think success is piles of money, then you're not looking at the right people.) Technology is continually advancing, improving, and expanding. To Will, that means that there is a place for students to have careers in the future – provided they know that’s an option to them.

So, it means something that an actual media star is saying to students a “dream life” is a career in the tech field. To convey that dream life ideal, Will wants to host an interactive TV show that features the next great technology giant. Think “Tech Idol” or “Tech Factor” where the competitors are creating the next great technology innovation.

How do we get word to him about The Inventure Prize?

You can watch Will’s BBC Interview online.

What do you think about his ideas about innovation, creativity, and the role of technology for students’ future careers? What are you telling your students about tech careers?

To share some tech careers in our own state with your students, check out the video shorts and supporting materials available from Fast Forward.