Imagine creating a team of young people charged with solving a pressing social, economic, or environmental challenge. Knowing that diversity drives innovation, you would stack the team with as many different perspectives and skills as possible.
You’d make sure you had math, science, social science, and the arts covered. You’d grab the entrepreneur who started an online company during high school. You’d add the activist who helped build a school in Kenya. And you’d grab the software whiz who developed an app that interprets dreams – ingenious! Why? Because the more these kids can surprise and inspire each other,
the more creative they will be. Now ask yourself this: what are the odds that you would limit yourself to a team of all boys or all girls? Pretty slim, if you want to succeed. Not only would you overlook half the population, but you’d also be missing out on important differences in perspective. Here’s an example:
The Rotman Net Impact Corporate Social Responsibility Case Competition at the University of Toronto draws teams from many of the best MBA programs in the country. This year, three teams from Ryerson swept the podium and every one of them was cross-cultural and cross-gender. As one member of the winning team put it, “diversity,
including diversity of experience, is what drives success in business.” Bringing together students of every background creates a culture of competence, creativity, and compassion. That’s why co-education is the best preparation for students to take on real life.