bridging divides

Brightest Young Minds (BYM) was founded in 2000 with the vision to create a platform that showcased the potential of South Africa’s brightest young minds in order to fast track their development for the benefit of country.

Initially BYM only offered a summit. The week-long experience bridged the gap between students and the professional world, encouraged students to share ideas amongst inspiring peers and allowed partner companies to pose specific challenges facing their businesses to a group of bright, young South Africans.

In BYM’s early days, observers like Mr. KK Combi and Ms. Gill Marcus understood the summit as one of the few opportunities in SA for students to have completely interracial, interdisciplinary and intercampus engagement. Diversity remains a core tenet of the organization.

The summit itself has been an example of innovation, exposing delegates to different facilitation techniques like appreciative inquiry, open-space technology and scenario planning, and providing them the space to creatively solve relevant social, cultural, environmental or economic challenges. Through the years BYM’s recognition and influence has grown, our number of applications for the programme reaching over 2000 per year.

From 2002, BYM introduced delegate opportunities beyond the summit, organizing mentoring programs, training and development seminars and project/business development supports.

BYM is now closer than ever to transforming the summit from the BYM mainstay into the BYM entry point by providing the network with structured opportunities to connect and mobilize their ideas.