Esteban Veintimilla, QS’ 1Mentor, Canada

Introduce yourself in three words or phrases.

A people person, a changemaker and an optimist.

What do you like most about your job?

I like two things most about my job. First is its roots in education – and second, I’m creating new things.

Tell me about a defining moment in your career.

It was when I found the problem that I’m currently solving. I used to work at the University of Waterloo in Canada, and my role was to help students find their first jobs. When I realised that it wasn’t just a student problem, and the world of work was really evolving really fast, I thought that there needs to be a way that education adapts and really responds to those changes.

That was a big moment for me, realising that it was a problem that was worth solving. That led me to build 1Mentor.

What keeps you awake at night?

Probably the questions of how you can reach the people that might not have access to education and technology. How can you democratise all the solutions that you’re building?

Best work trip?

The Innovation of the Future of Education Conference in 2023 in Monterrey was great. We were only operating in Canada and the US last year – we went to the IFE Conference and we were able to scale to Mexico, Ecuador, Costa Rica and Colombia right after that – it made a huge impact on our business.

What’s a story of a student you’ve helped?

There was a student in mathematics we were helping through 1Mentor, but his passion wasn’t there. His ideal goal was to go into gaming – and the first thing that we were able to see when he started using 1Mentor was that he was able to identify way more opportunities that he was able to choose from.

It wasn’t just in the gaming industry, there was multiple things that he could do. He went from one career objective that was kind of fuzzy to five really clear career objectives that he wanted to achieve.

He was able to identify his strengths and the way that he was able to complement them with skills he could gain so he could get that first co-op internship – it wasn’t entirely tied to his degree, but it was something he was actually interested in and that he had a strength in, which we were able to guide him to pinpoint.

If you could learn a language instantly, what would it be?

I would say German, but I’m a little biased – my girlfriend’s family is from Germany, and I don’t understand when they speak to each other over the phone, so it would be nice to understand!

I’d also go with Mandarin, to see what impact can be made on Asia.

“He was able to identify his strengths and the way that he was able to complement them with skills he could gain”

Do you have a podcast recommendation for others in the sector?

The LatAm Venture Capital podcast from Enzo Cavalie.

He’s from Peru and talks about brand new businesses, entrepreneurship and everything – it’s a great source for everyone in Latin America to talk a bit more about solving big problems and also executing on the ideas that you have.


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