Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 21st 2017 Contents A26 life
guardian.co.tt Monday, August 21, 2017
Melissa Pascal has a lot on her
mind. Ideas that zoom as quickly
as the pace she speaks, trying to
find a way to connect young peo-
ple to developing themselves as
strong, determined, successes.
Out of the many ideas, she has
developed a two-day forum for
young entrepreneurs which
takes place on August 25 and 26
at the Arthur Lok Jack School of
Business, Champs Fleurs.
"I wanted to do something amaz-
ing before I was 30. I googled and
stumbled upon One Young World
(OYW). It's about social entrepre-
neurship, about making a difference.
I left my job at Scotia, I reached
Thailand in 2015," she said.
At the OYW session in Thailand,
she met 2006 Nobel Peace Prize re-
cipient, Muhammad Yunus. Yunus,
a Bangladeshi, defined a concept of
microcredit and microfinance that
helped entrepreneurs too poor to
qualify for bank loans. Coming
from a family of entrepreneurs,
whose name is well known at many
Trinidad breakfast tables, Pascal felt
that young people in Trinidad could
learn something from this. But for
her, it also meant a new chapter in
"I have an insatiable hunger to
leave a legacy of positive impact in
the Region. I grew up in an incuba-
tor since I so (she lowers her hand to
demonstrate). I was in a 'shark tank,'
I have been pitching since I was five
years old," she said.
Before she turned 26, Pascal al-
ready had three businesses. While at
university abroad, she turned $100
into $25,000 in one year. She ran a
jewellery business, then she had a
café. She applied her business savvy
when she did her Masters at Arthur
Lok Jack. Closing in on 32 in Septem-
ber, she has found more strength in
developing a tech(nology) network.
"My power lies in the network, my
network is equivalent to my net
worth," she said.
The tech network is built on devel-
oping connections in the IT space,
as young business owners use so-
cial media to connect with potential
audiences and customer base. Value
is placed on a connective following
and it is on this a network is based.
"I have been building this network
for the past 10 to 15 years without
realising it," Pascal said.
Based on this network concept,
social entrepreneurship becomes
palatable. Millennial entrepre-
neurs are found mainly on social
media and web pages. Technology
and entrepreneurship then becomes
a beautiful pairing, she said. Since
her return from Thailand, she has
been amping up social media as her
communication. That's how she has
been getting the word out about the
The British High Commission will
host the launch of the One Young
World Caribbean Caucus on August
24. On August 25 and 26, the caucus
will host regional youth ambassadors
including those from Belize, Haiti,
St Lucia and Jamaica. The session
caters for young people between the
ages of 18 and 30 years who have a
passion, who wish to make an impact
on their community, who seek and
There will be panels under the
themes Entrepreneurship and Social
Education; Social Inclusion; Chal-
lenges and Opportunity for Carib-
bean Youth. In addition, a collection
of Trinidad and Caribbean produced
films will be shown.
The objective is more than seeking
that Caribbean identity in business,
Pascal said, but understanding pur-
pose and drive.
"Once you have found your own
and proven yourself, you have made
your mark. The next step is to work
side by side to create. That is the
win-win relationship. That old
school mentality of competitiveness
has to go," she said.
Melissa Pascal at the One Young World session in Thailand.
One Young World in the Caribbean
About One Young World
• Event will take place on August
26th- 27th at the Arthur Lok Jack
Graduate School of Business.
• T&T will host the first ever Caucus
to be held in the Caribbean Region.
• Eligible for young people between
the ages of 18-30 years
• Local and regional speakers to
Further information: www.
caucus-25-26-august or Free One
Young World Caribbean Caucus
2017 on Facebook
ABOUT MELISSA PASCAL
• Coach entrepreneur and coordina-
tor for the One Young World Carib-
• Melissa is an entrepreneur who
uses her own experiences in busi-
ness to support and help smaller
• Former member of the National
Women’s Senior Hockey Team
• She’s into venture racing and
Melissa Pascal wanted to do
'something amazing' before she
was 30. She left her job to pursue a
career in social entrepreneurship.
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