Date posted: 4/10/2017 8 min read

One Young World, two young leaders

Two young accounting students are rubbing shoulders with young world leaders at the One Young World summit.

In Brief

  • The One Young World leadership conference takes place in Bogot√°, Colombia from October 4-7.
  • Chartered Accountants ANZ sponsors young delegates each year to attend One Young World, attended by 8,000 young leaders and influential thought leaders.
  • Human rights, sexual violence, poverty, business ethics and raising minority voices are on the agenda.

Gaining fresh perspective on global issues and contributing to local communities are issues that are hot on the minds of two aspiring business leaders, who are “buzzing” to be attending this year’s One Young World summit this year in Colombia.

Twenty-year-old Harry Flett, from Christchurch, and Jozo Frankovic, 22, who lives in Wollongong, were chosen by Chartered Accountants ANZ to attend the summit, being held in Bogotá, Colombia from 4-7 October. The massive annual event brings together 8,000 young leaders and boasts some of the most influential world leaders and Hollywood stars. 

Some of the big names headlining this year are Kofi Annan, former Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ron Garan, social entrepreneur and former NASA Astronaut, Tawakkol Karman, 2011 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and AnnaLynne McCord, Hollywood actress and activist. 

“I’m absolutely buzzing to be heading over,” says Frankovic, who is currently studying for a Bachelor of Commerce (Dean's Scholar) majoring in Finance and Accounting at the University of Wollongong.

“I just can’t wait for the opportunity and for what lies ahead. I’m particularly passionate about education and there are some talks I’m really keen to head along to. Being around real big global players is just incredible.”

Perspective on the global issues

It’s the global issues of our time that Flett is hoping to focus on. “These are important issues that we should be talking about and be making a proactive step towards solving, but (they) are not often not at the forefront,” he says. 

“These are the issues that you can sort of cast aside. You forget about (them) when you’re wrapped up in your own world and day-to-day happenings, so I’m really looking forward to hopefully gaining a fresh perspective, and also a proper understanding of some of the important issues that plague our world.”

Pictured: Harry Flett, One Young World 2017 Delegate

Flett is currently studying Finance and Accounting at the University of Otago.

He plans to bring a deeper understanding of global issues home with him to New Zealand, where he hopes it will have an influence. “I’m really looking forward to hopefully realising what an impact we can make in our own communities and bringing that back to New Zealand and trying to inspire others to engage in similar sort of actions,” he says. Social welfare and developing others are areas he intends to improve on. 

Issues on the agenda this year range from economic development, sexual violence, world peace, prospects for millennials, human rights and sustainability in the chocolate industry.

Bogota is home to this year’s summit, the capital and largest city of Colombia. Home to over eight million people, the city has worked hard to change its notorious crime image and has recently been dubbed South America’s emerging premier tech hub. 

“The location seems really exciting. Colombia is one of the world’s emerging nation and Bogota an emerging city,” says Flett. “It’s really exciting to go to somewhere like that, rather than going to a fully developed country. 

“The location and the city in itself is really going to set the event up to be quite inspiring, so I’m really looking forward to that and experiencing a new culture, and really immersing myself in Bogota.”

Networking will be huge - and meeting similar and likeminded people
Harry Flett One Young World 2017 Delegate 

As the summit brings together thousands of young leaders from every corner of the globe, it offers a rare opportunity to mix with countless other cultures and backgrounds.

“I hope to engage with other leaders around the world, to make new connections, and challenge myself as well as developing my own skills. I’m really looking forward to representing the Chartered Accountant Australia and New Zealand brand. “Networking will be huge and also meeting similar and likeminded people,” says Flett.

Expanding horizons 

The location is also important to Frankovic, who says it encapsulates the summit as a whole.

“The whole notion of One Young World means that it’s about every place and all the people in the world. It’s not just going to the developed big cities, it’s about going to places like Bogota and Colombia. 

“It’s about expanding the horizons of where you typically go and I’m actually really looking forward to that opportunity,” says Frankovic. He was born in Germany but has lived in Wollongong ever since his family moved to Australia when he was four years old. He plans to specialise on the areas of education and environment at the summit.

Pictured: Jozo Frankovic, One Young World 2017 Delegate

Frankovic recently carried out research at university into environmental issues and believes “we’ve really stagnated as a global community on the issue (of the environment), which is kind of sticking with the status quo”.

He looks forward to hearing global leaders speak about their fresh perspectives and ideas on how we can really push ourselves along to a type of neutral future. “Seeing how some of the business leaders are actually adapting their own strategies and their own operations to make that goal possible, I think that’s quite exciting,” he adds. 

It really gives you a lot of perspective in terms of where you are heading in the future
Jozo Frankovic One Young World 2017 Delegate

The event, which spans across three days will be a “massive eye-opener,” he says. “It really gives you a lot of perspective in terms of where you are heading in the future. I’m going with a really open mind and I think there will be lots to gain from it, lots of friendships, and lots of new ideas being explored. 

“I want to get a bit more perspective about where I’m heading in the future and how I can best contribute to the community around me and I guess the world around me as well, so it’s really quite an exciting time.”

Sharing experiences and building friendships 

Frankovic has done some travelling before, but the prospect of mixing with different cultures is still an exciting prospect. 

“I’ve never been to South America before but I just can’t wait for the opportunity and for what lies ahead with it. Having that opportunity to meet young people from all walks of life and to share experiences. To find out what it’s like to be a young person in Colombia, be a young person in China, be a young person anywhere across the world, that will be quite an interesting thing that I’ll get out of it.

“Being exposed and having the opportunity to speak to other people about how their day is and how it’s similar or different to mine own, I think that’s going to be quite exciting and then obviously building some great friendships with people that you know you can take into the future, whatever direction you go in. It’s an exciting opportunity,” says Frankovic. 

This year One Young World is taking place in Bogotá, Colombia from 4-7 October. Find out more about the summit here

Harry and Jozo will be sharing their adventures at One Young World on Instagram. Click here to follow Harry's journey and click here to see what Jozo gets up to. 

Related: Catching breaks, taking opportunities and making a difference

One Young World Ambassador Charles Zhang attended the summit in 2016. The experience was life-changing and earlier this year he co-founded a social giving platform, Journey Crowdfunding.