In March 2020, Lella's GCSE exams were cancelled just 50 days before her first written paper. She could not ‘just’ put down her textbooks overnight and return to a ‘normal’ life, the revision had become her new normal. Remarkably, Lella turned her worst nightmare into her superpower & designed a program to connect the 1.6B students out of school due to the pandemic and provide fundamental skills to help us build a youth-centred and future-focused tomorrow.
Lella currently leads StudEntX: for, with & by students, a bi-weekly series of talks focused on the future of work and closing the digital skills gap. All episodes are designed to be youth centred for a global audience, interactive, and fun. Participants can expect to learn, explore, network with peers, and discover learning paths for finding the career of their dreams that incorporates both their purpose and passion.
Lella co-founded zStudents in the Summer of 2020 to keep fellow students motivated through these anomalous times. She hosted bi-weekly discussions with a range of subject matter experts to break stereotypes surrounding the tech industry. After engaging with thousands of zStudents, she founded the zStudents Committee — a group of young technologists from across the world who are united by a desire to create content that is entirely for, with, and by students, they enable young people to speak with industry thought leaders rather than be spoken to — often seen at traditional ‘webinars’.
In celebration of the annual United Nations Global Goals Week, Lella hosted a week of intergenerational panels focused on how YOU can impact your communities, schools, family, and friends to work towards solving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in support of IBM Z, USAID, YouthPower2Learning & Evaluation's Global YouthLead Network & UN EQUALS.
Lella is a tech trailblazer & has founded a wide-range of initiatives to solve tomorrow's problems, today. Including:
IBM Z Global Student Hub — a global online network for students to learn, create & change the world.
The Human Code — a day-long event filled with accomplished and celebrated global artists and technologists, including Terence Lewis (Bollywood Choreographer), Ty Roberts (Head of Strategic Partnerships for TIDAL).
IBMZ-4-Good Ideathon promoted the learning of new digital skills, and the sharing of skills ‘forward’ in their community with an aim of encouraging participants to become future changemakers.
CodeTheCurve a global hackathon by IBM, SAP, UNESCO, UN EQUALS, and 20+ other collaborators.
She is also a frequent speaker & thought leader for the United Nations & partner agencies, most notably the International Telecommunications Union.
No Decision About Us, Without Us
Everything Lella works on is underpinned by her notion to ensure no decision is made about the 'digital generation' without the 'digital generation'.
Lella has promoted the creation of peer-to-peer and student-led opportunities with a range of collaborators. As an #iwill Ambassador, Super Stemette with Stemettes, Changemaker of the Year at Goodwall, imagiGirl at ImagiLabs & Project Management Officer at MentorNations.