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Founder and CEO of Darlo, Dr Brendon Moloney

Failing our future entrepreneurs: the start-up revamping an outdated higher education sector

The fundamental selling point of higher education institutions: the higher you take your education, the higher are your chances of landing that dream job. Of course – this makes perfect sense, but with record numbers of students entering higher education, where are these jobs coming from and who is expected to create them? While the higher education system is in full throttle preparing students for the benefits of entrepreneurialism [jobs], one Melbourne start-up sees a glitch in this arguably unsustainable logic. Seeking to revamp the outdated curriculums offered by higher education providers is Dr. Brendan Moloney, founder and CEO of Melbourne-based venture, Darlo.

‘The expected graduate outcome is to get a job rather than start a business’

Dr Brendan said “higher education curriculum is generally based on an industrial-age model of manufacturing and production.

“Campuses are still mostly catering in their services and products for students who are entering higher education as school-leavers. Few of these offerings focus on innovation or entrepreneurship. The expected graduate outcome is to get a job rather than start a business.”

Dr Brendan believes that education is failing the next generation of entrepreneurial leaders because existing systems are not set up in a way that is relevant to work or life.

“The jobs market is no longer as attractive as it once was, and with the untapped creativity, energy and vision of many young leaders, there are virtually no formal education opportunities to facilitate this learning,” he said.

According to Dr Brendan the main issues with existing higher education offerings are; a lack of innovation, a lack of choice with many candidates unaware of private education providers and the rise of fees. Dr Brendan believes that greater recognition of mature-aged students looking to reskill and deregulation of private providers for wider and more cost-effective choices will help bring tomorrow’s leaders to the fore.

‘We are placed on the right side of history’

The first of its kind, Darlo is already making waves in the private higher education sector having grown from 3 to 35 staff in 9 months. With a team of highly regarded academics, Darlo challenges traditional curriculums taught in most universities and TAFEs and works alongside higher education providers to create alternative models of work and education that focus on innovation and emerging future industries.

Dr Brendan said “Darlo has experienced such rapid growth because we are placed on the right side of history. With globalisation, a global workforce, and a premium on creativity, our team is savvy in working with Australian and international partners to capitalise on the movement of people and workforce.”

On a mission to make higher education more relevant, Darlo anticipates that it will ultimately contribute to the growth of innovation and the wider business scene through its partnerships with higher education providers.

Dr Brendon said “over the next 5 years, we plan to roll out a number of services within Australia as well as internationally. We can help facilitate better learning and economic development throughout the world.

“We are very much convinced of our mission,” said Dr Brandon.

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Daniel Jacobs

Daniel Jacobs

Daniel Jacobs was editor of Dynamic Business.

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