YNA initially started as a small project in 2017 between two medical students -- Jade Pham and Onur Tanglay to provide public neuroscience and medical education, particularly to those who are less privileged in receiving similar opportunities in mentorship, research, networking, and general neuroscience and clinical knowledge. Both founders have their histories grounded in neuroscience, having both represented Australia at the International Brain Bee Championship, and have since been heavily involved in research and medicine. The plan was simple: to build a small group of young people to support other young people, by addressing education inequalities in accessibility issues in Australia, and promoting critical thinking and transferable skills through a refreshing yet practical take on “the brain in STEM”.
Co-founder Jade Pham
Co-founder Onur Tanglay
The organisation, of course, grew. Throughout our establishing year (2018/2019), YNA trialled successful webinars, educational workshops, and seminars in neuroscience and clinical neurology, further expanding to work with the Department of Education in developing a long-term high school program to support student engagement in STEM, particularly for the under-resourced. As YNA became more involved with the people we were helping, we realised the potential we had in impacting youth education in a domain larger than neuroscience.
YNA has thus evolved into a vehicle for change in approaching STEM education, support, and transferable skills, and we do this through sharing our passions. Our team is enormous and is only getting bigger; we have individuals who are absolutely thrilled about surgical robots, neural coding, cancer research, cardiology, or even mental health and psychology, and we want YNA to be a creative, innovative platform to channel this passionate energy into supporting youth education in science, technology, and beyond.