Program details

Below is an overview of the program:

Overview

TKS is a 10-month accelerator program from September 2023 to June 2024. During the program, students attend weekly 3-hour sessions with their cohort. Each cohort has ~40 students and a full-time Program Director and Associate Director that are dedicated to coaching and guiding students.

During the week, students can earn access to special events like guest speakers, workshops, and conferences. We also host socials and community events for the students to make friends with others from around the world and locally.

The core elements of TKS include:

  • Project Building: We've designed a highly effective project-based learning method called "The Focus Process". During TKS, we help students explore various topics and discover their interests. Once they find something they're excited about, we help them build real projects, while connecting with experts and mentors to support them.

  • Challenges: TKS students learn how to solve real-world problems by working with global companies. Students have worked on challenges with the United Nations, Google, Airbnb, Microsoft, IKEA, and many more. They learn how to apply frameworks including First Principles Thinking, MECE Analysis, and breaking down problems into their root causes.

  • Moonshots: Inspired by Google and The Moonshot Factory, students expand their limit of ambition and think beyond traditional constraints. They create projects and ideas to solve problems that impact millions, while gaining a depth of understanding in the economics of the industry and technical/scientific requirements.

  • Mentorship & Coaching: In TKS, students learn to set personal objectives, stay accountable, and increase their personal bandwidth/productivity levels. They can schedule 1-on-1 coaching calls with their program directors, and attend group coaching workshops on topics like "how to connect with experts on LinkedIn" and "creating a personal Eisenhower Matrix". They can also access our expert mentors, who support them on technical projects and provide personalized guidance.

  • Community: Meeting like-minded people and forming new friendships are central in TKS. We do this through community events (virtual and in-person), interactive team-based projects, alumni mentorship, and more.

  • Real-World Skills: Develop useful skills that you'll use in the real world, including networking, cold outreach, public speaking, presenting, writing (not essays), personal brand building, and productivity hacks.

By the end of the program, students achieve exponential growth - personally, socially, and academically.

Eligibility

This program is designed for high school students between the ages of 13-17.

You don't need previous knowledge about emerging technology and coding, however having this knowledge can be helpful during the program.

Note: At the time of applying, you can be 12 years old.

Location

The location for TKS Vancouver is Victoria Square Ventures - 1500 W Georgia St #800, Vancouver, BC.

We partner with innovative companies to host TKS programs. These spaces are optimized for team collaboration, large presentations, and engaging discussions.

Tuition

Tuition for the program goes directly into employee salaries and operating costs. Our program directors and staff are full-time and 100% dedicated to our students and alumni.

Tuition:

  • $589/month + deposit payment ($1,000)


Duration:

  • The program is 10 months.
  • September 2023 to June 2024.

Financial Aid:
Our commitment is to support ambitious students regardless of their financial situation. Accepted students must apply for financial support and demonstrate their financial needs to ensure support is going to the people who need it most. Please don’t let your financial situation stop you from applying.

To learn more, click here.

Important Dates

Below are important dates to remember:

Program Dates
The program will run from September 2023 to June 2024.

Early Application Deadline
February 28, 2023.

Regular Application Deadline
We evaluate applications on a rolling cycle until May. This means that if you submit your application tomorrow, we will review it and get back to you within 14 days. Once the program is full, we will no longer accept applications.

Have more questions? Visit our FAQ.

Schedule

Immersive sessions to accelerate your growth.

TKS was developed with CEOs and global leaders, modeled after curriculums from Stanford, Harvard, and MIT, and is designed to replicate the learning environment and culture of Silicon Valley.

Kickoff
Kick off TKS with a bang, meet the other students in your cohort and start to build new friendships. Learn what to expect from the program, get excited, and experience your first taste of the TKS community.
Week 1
Unconventional Thinking
Understand how you can have asymmetric impact on the world and why unconventional thinking is a necessary ingredient on your journey. "In order to achieve unconventional success, you must take an unconventional path." - Nadeem Nathoo, TKS Founder
Week 2
Next Big Thing
Collaborate in teams to research and present what you think the next big thing will be and why it will shift humanity's trajectory. "The best way to predict the future, is to create it." - Peter Drucker
Week 3
Artificial Intelligence
Create applications using artificial intelligence, while exploring the implications of this technology on the future. Learn how companies like OpenAI and DeepMind are shaping the future of work, art, education, and business.
Week 4
Blockchain
Have you heard of Cryptocurrency, NFTs, or DAOs? These are all built on blockchains. Learn how to create your own decentralized app (dApp), crypto project, or NFT, while understanding how blockchain can be applied to solve real problems.
Week 5
Life & Success
Engage in deep philosophical discussions about life. Critically analyze and discuss what success means to you versus what society defines it as, and how you can create your own path to success.
Week 6
Human Longevity
Scientific advancements are increasing human longevity in areas including cellular senescence, telomeres, regenerative medicine, immunology, and gene editing. Learn about these new areas while discussing the ethical implications of increasing lifespan.
Week 7
Explore Hackathon
Design solutions to important problems using the emerging technologies and sciences that you've been exposed to, and present your ideas to a panel of expert judges with background in areas like AI, synthetic biology and more.
Week 8
Brain-Computer Interfaces
Brainstorm new uses for BCIs that will shape our lifestyle in the coming decades. Companies like Neuralink, Kerel, and Neurable are bridging the gap between human brains and machines to solve neurological disorders and control prosthetic body parts.
Week 9
Real-World Challenge (1/3)
The best way to learn how to solve real-world problems is by working with a company on a challenge they're facing. In this session you'll choose between multiple challenges based on your interests and start researching a solution.
Week 10
Real-World Challenge (2/3)
Learn about mental models and problem-solving frameworks like First Principles Thinking and MECE Analysis to develop viable solutions that the company you're working with can implement. In the real world, there's no answers at the back of the textbook.
Week 11
Real-World Challenge (3/3)
Review your final recommendations and submit your proposal to the company. in the session, you'll do a post-mortem to reflect on your learnings from the challenge, transferrable skills you learned, and obstacles you faced.
Week 12
Global Community
In this highly engaging and fun session you'll meet like-minded TKS students from around the world. You'll also get a chance to learn more about the other TKS directors, their backgrounds, expertise, and personalities.
Week 13
Genetic Engineering
The new gene editing technology, CRISPR, has pushed the boundaries for scientific research and our ability to cure deadly diseases. Learn how we can apply gene editing and sequencing to cure cancer, malaria, and solve birth defects in babies before they're born.
Week 14
Quantum Computing
Discover the next wave of computing that is being powered by Quantum Computers, which use qubits and quantum gates to solve highly complex problems with large data sets that supercomputers are not able to solve.
Week 15
Metaverse
Virtual and augmented reality are creating new worlds for people to live in. In this session, collaborate with each other to brainstorm new opportunities that can exist in the Metaverse and design solutions to make it happen.
Week 16
Focus Hackathon
Work in teams to design solutions to some of the world’s most important problems using the intersection of multiple Focus areas - your chosen area of interest! Present your solutions to experts and get feedback on your ideas.
Week 17
Mental Models
To prepare for the Global Challenge, go deeper into mental models and apply them to problems like solving world hunger. This session provides you with a better understanding of advanced problem-solving frameworks.
Week 18
Harvard Business Case
Experience what it’s like going to Harvard Business School (HBS) by working on a Harvard Case. You’ll train advanced analytical skills and learn about how to solve business problems.
Week 19
Global Challenge (1/3)
You’ll work in teams to tackle global challenges, perform experiential research, and create a in-depth recommendations. Previously, students have worked with organizations like the United Nations, Airbnb, and Microsoft for the Global Challenge.
Week 20
Global Challenge (2/3)
Understanding problems is critical to solving them. You will learn how to deeply understand your challenge problem by doing stakeholder interviews and breaking down how to ask good questions to uncover valuable data.
Week 21
Global Challenge (3/3)
Learn how to give high quality feedback, then in groups provide feedback to other students on their recommendations. You will leave with clarity, action items to improve your recommendations, and goals you want to hit.
Week 22
Global Community
Reconnect with the TKS global community in this highly engaging and fun session. Engage with others from around the world in a collaborative post-mortem to reflect on learnings, struggles, best practices, and learnings from failures.
Week 23
World's Biggest Problems
Learn how you can impact billions by understanding the root causes behind some of the world's biggest problems, and using a root cause analysis framework to brainstorm potential approaches to solve them.
Week 24
World Hunger
Identify potential solutions to reduce world hunger using the WBP framework, which includes identifying root causes and weaknesses of the existing solutions to come up with a viable hypothesis.
Week 25
Moonshot Projects (1/4)
Get introduced to Moonshot thinking and how Google created a division, The Moonshot Factory, to build Moonshot Projects. Learn how to "Think 10x" to solve problems using emerging technologies in ways that haven't been done before.
Week 26
Moonshot Projects (2/4)
Analyze frameworks that innovative companies use to create disruptive technologies, including learning how to prioritize right problems, embracing failure, killing projects early, and iterating. Work on your projects in teams.
Week 27
Moonshot Projects (3/4)
This session is focused on developing a deep technical understanding of your Moonshot project. Identify the technical gap, find experts to connect with who can help you, and bridge the gap to transform your idea into a feasible solution.
Week 28
Moonshot Projects (4/4)
Work on your Moonshots in teams. In this session, you'll also learn how important company culture is from organizations like Google and SpaceX, and how culture is foundational to creating transformative innovation.
Week 29
Moonshot Presentations
Present your Moonshots to a panel of judges from some of the world's most innovative and disruptive companies. The judges will ask hard questions and give you feedback/advice if you plan on pursuing your idea.
Week 30
TKS Showcase
Showcase your projects and growth during the year-end TKS Showcase. Network with guests, which will include venture capital investors, CEOs, startup founders, executives, and TKS alumni.
Week 31
Self-Awareness
Reflect on the exponential growth you've experienced during TKS, and how that will enable you to accelerate your trajectory. You'll be asked deep questions that will make you reflect and have important insights.
Week 32
Global Alumni Event
Join the global TKS alumni community as an official alumni. Spark new friendships and networks with hundreds of other TKS alumni from around the world who are building companies, working at leading research labs, and attending top-tier universities.
Week 33
Summer Internships
Many students secure summer internships at companies. Apply the skills, knowledge, and mindsets you learned during TKS to the real-world and experience how innovative companies and startups operate.
Summer
Activate (Year 2)
The second year of TKS is heavily focused on global problems and applying the knowledge learned during the first year of TKS. Students must apply again and be accepted to join Activate.
Year 2

Session Schedule

Challenges

Work on real problems with global companies.

We don’t use textbooks.

You'll work on solving real problems that companies are facing today. You’ll learn how to use first principles thinking and mental models to prepare a recommendation for the company, and if selected, present to their leadership team.

Past challenge partners include:

Xprize
Walmart
Wealthsimple
United Nations
Microsoft
Kidogo
Google
BenchSci
airbnb

Mentors

Access 200+ mentors from various industries.

Get mentorship from successful people who are experts in their industries. We have incredible mentors who love supporting TKS students and the projects you’re building.

Kashmera Self

Ryan Gariepy

Chris Stefanyk

Andres Forsland

Julie Hansen

Michelle McBane

Aly Dhalla

Mark Swihart

Ethan Siegel

Mudit Rawat

Sheela Surisetty

Neeraj Sonalkar

Afraj Gill

Nazneen Rajani

Kirstie Thompson

John Wang

Audrey Scholz

Sajjad Kamal

Anjeli Doty

Luke Morrison

Bert Moons

Bianca Boyd

Tonya Bongolan

Marga Heras

Zach Cusimano

Andy Yang

Nathan Cheng

Mohammed Alhuniti

Ignacio Rozada

Oren Berkovich

Christal Wang

Aleksandr Stabenow

Karina Popovich

Taraneh Khazaei

Gautam Talagery

Kevin Kung

Melissa Romulus Lisanti

Solon Angel

Viraj Mane

Carol Mazzoni

Nikhil Yadala

Nikhil Singhal

Steven Morse

Natasha Walji

Jonathan Jiang

Philip Scott

Doug van Spronsen

Michelle Gordon

Tricia Jose

Rahul Rana

Kevin Northrup

Maziar Refahi

Andy Anthony

Bhavya Shah

Guoming Wang

Rita Abdellatifi

Alex Trott

Yves Guillame Messy

Darien Schettler

Nimi Vashi

Oleksii Kuchalev

Peter Boyce II

Javad Shafiee

Simon Smith

Shak Parran

Jamil Dewsi

Ricky Mehra

Michael Healy

Matt Thomas

Josef Scarantino

Manolis Kellis

Murat Beshtoev

Davide Valeriani

Samira Khan

Ted Graham

Sajida Zouarhi

Steve Woods

Alyf Janmohamed

Piotr Mierzejewski

Maria V. Ruiz-Blondet

Sara Davila

Emilie Camera

Matthew Reyes

Riccardo Terrell

Denis Villeneuve

Jose Zea

Elizabeth Caley

Danish Dhamani

William Guss

Daniel Weisman

Robyn Agoston

Adam Molnar

Atlee Clark

Michael Grad

Julia Kassam

Sarthak Sinha

Bruno Rousseau

Sarah Gilpin

Kai Hudek

Jay Goldman

See more mentors

Internships

Get work experience at a summer internship.

We help students secure summer internships at companies. It’s rare for teens to work at leading companies, but TKS is the exception. During TKS, you will build a portfolio of projects and develop real-world skills employers are looking for.

Through our corporate internship partners and training workshops, we will help you earn an internship. These opportunities aren't guaranteed, but your chances of being hired are significantly higher if you follow our training.

These are some students who have earned summer internships:

Allison Dana

Valkyrie Holmes

Arnav Shah

Ananya Chadha

Kristina Arezina

Davide Radaelli

Stephanie Porfiris

Matt Stokes

Yelim Kim

Ciara Sejour

Ayaan Esmail

Sheryl Li

Neha Shukla

Ayleen Farnood

Guido Putignano

Jack Ceroni

Brianna Gopaul

Jerry Qu

Shagun Maheshwari

Ramy Zhang

Tommy Moffat

Ryan Chan

Elena Mishina

Fatima Khawaja

Heya Desai

Swarit Dholakia

Satvik Agnihotri

Hackathons

Your team has 24hrs to
solve [x], go.

Brainstorm and design solutions to problems using emerging technologies and sciences.

Hackathons were born in Silicon Valley from the mindset of “move fast and break things”, famously coined by Facebook. The purpose was to think fast and brainstorm without constraints.

TKS sessions are highly engaging and experiential. You’ll constantly be working on problems that don’t have solutions... yet.

Our Platform

Everything you’ll need, in one place.

There are tons of resources and tools on our platform for you to discover that will help accelerate your growth. Here are a few:

Explore Modules
Learn about over 40 emerging technologies and sciences at your own pace.

Braindates
Meet with TKS students and alumni from around the world to develop friendships, learn from each other, and grow together!

Activity Feed
See what projects other TKS students are working on in our real-time activity page.

Playbooks and Resources
Access playbooks on over 30 topics like networking, productivity hacks, and mental wellness.

Events
See upcoming events, including guest speakers, workshops, and games nights.

... and so much more!

Community

Develop meaningful friendships for life.

Our community is filled with people who want to make the world a better place. Meet your future best friends and co-founders, while having fun and accelerating your personal growth. During the program we host community events for you to meet people in your cohort, the global TKS community, and alumni.

“Before joining TKS, I didn’t really feel like I fit in at school. But during the program I met so many amazing people that made me feel like I belong here. I found my tribe.”
- Kevin Liu

Mindsets

“What you think you become.” - Buddha

Your mindset is the foundation of your thoughts and actions. In each session, you’ll train a new weekly mindset that will accelerate your personal growth. We train mindsets with action items and real-world examples of how to implement these mindsets.

Bias towards action is a mindset we train, one of Amazon’s leadership principles.  Oftentimes we overthink and second guess ourselves. Having a bias towards action allows us to make decisions quickly and take action without falling into the trap of overthinking.

These are some other mindsets we train:

  • Self-awareness
  • Done > Perfect
  • Antifragility
  • Discipline
  • Figure it out
  • Kindness
  • Perspective
  • Mindfulness
  • Stoicism
  • 10x Thinking

Application Process

Here’s how to apply to
join TKS.

There are three stages of the application process. We’re looking for people who are impact-driven, curious to learn about exponential technologies, and want to join a global community of like-minded people.

Stage 1: Application

The first step is to submit your application to join TKS.

Here is a guide that will help you answer the questions.

What to expect:

  • There are two parts that should take between 15min to 60min depending on the depth of your answers.
  • Part 1: We ask for basic information about you, including your name, email, and age.
  • Part 2: There are 4 questions that help us evaluate your curiosity, drive, and reason for wanting to join.

The guide above provides details on how we evaluate each question.

Note: We don't ask for your grades or academic performance. We believe that success in the real-world depends on traits beyond what traditional education systems evaluate.

Stage 2: Interview

If you pass the application stage, you'll be invited to an interview.

During the interview, we will ask you questions to learn more about you. We also want to evaluate how you interact with other students, which is why our interviews are group interviews. You may be asked to work as a team on a problem, or collaborate on a new idea together.

Note: Most interviews are done virtually, so please make sure you have a good internet connection and your video/audio is working.

Stage 3: Enrolment

If you pass the interview stage, you'll receive an offer to join TKS.

Historically, between 10-20% of students receive an acceptance offer. While it is competitive, we look for future potential over past accomplishments. Our founder Navid Nathoo said, "It's not about what you've done, but what you will do."

Once you receive an offer to join TKS, you will:

  • Choose your cohort (time/day)
  • If applicable, apply for financial aid
  • Submit your tuition payment

Your family will also be invited to attend a welcome session, where they can ask questions about the program.

Tuition & Financial Aid

Program costs and financial support.

Tuition for the program goes directly into employee salaries and operating costs. Our program directors and staff are full-time and 100% dedicated to our students and alumni.

Tuition:

  • $589/month + deposit payment ($1,000)

Duration:

  • The program is 10 months.
  • September 2023 to June 2024.

Financial Aid:
Our commitment is to support ambitious students regardless of their financial situation. To ensure support is going to the people who need it most, accepted students must apply for financial support and demonstrate their financial needs. Please don’t let your financial situation stop you from applying.

To learn more, click here.

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

What's the time commitment?

The duration of weekly sessions are 2-3 hours. The day and time will depend on the cohort you select upon being accepted. Usually, these sessions are on the weekend or weekday evenings.

Outside of sessions, students work on a variety of projects. There are no set time requirements, however students who grow the most during TKS typically allocate 5-10 hours weekly to their projects.

There's no homework in TKS. We've designed the program to reflect the real world and built our own learning platform for students to dive into emerging technologies/sciences, connect with mentors, and work on projects at their own pace.

We also host optional events, such as guest speakers and workshops on topics ranging from mental health, time management, and machine learning. These are typically 1 hour.

Overall, we've designed the program for the students. You can grow at your own pace, but at minimum attend the weekly sessions.

Is there a refund policy?

Yes.

We understand that situations can change. If you join TKS and during the year would like to withdraw your enrolment, you will be eligible to receive a partial refund.

Refund Policy

  • You may request to withdraw from TKS at any time during the year.
  • Refunds are prorated based on the number of months remaining in the program.
  • Early withdrawals are subject to a 20% fee of the full tuition, which covers costs associated with admission, including administrative and program costs.
  • The student must follow our withdrawal process to receive the refund, which includes scheduling an off-boarding meeting with their director and submitting their reason for withdrawal.

Deposits

The purpose of the deposit is to secure a spot in the program, since there is limited space in TKS. By confirming your enrolment, you will be taking away the opportunity from another prospective participant. Therefore, deposits are non-refundable.

Do I need technical knowledge to join?

No, you don't need previous technical knowledge or coding skills to join. However, having this knowledge can be helpful.

During the program, you will learn the knowledge and skills you need to develop projects in your interest areas. We provide guidance and coaching along the way so you feel supported and motivated, especially when working on complex subjects.

We provide playbooks, mentorship, and resources to help you learn what you need to accomplish your goals.

Is there financial aid available?

Yes, we believe that financial barriers should not impact a student's ability to access quality education.

If you're accepted, you will receive instructions on how to apply for financial aid. We've provided hundreds of students around the world with financial aid, which have helped them attend the program.

Our financial aid fund is supported by sponsorships from partners like Walmart, Masason Foundation, IKEA, Microsoft, RBC, Shell, and others. As an organization, TKS also contributes a large portion to our financial aid fund.  

These funds are only provided to families that need financial support. These funds do not need to be repaid.

Note: Distributions are limited to the fund size. The sooner you apply, the higher chances you have to receive support.

See more FAQs