2015 dual Bachelor of Business Management and Commerce valedictorian Mikayla Ivanov literally has the world at her tippy toes.
Mikayla, who graduates majoring in accounting, marketing and sustainability, co-created a ballet program for children with special needs with fellow student Zachary Fook as part of their social entrepreneurship course. The Tippy Toe co. has taught more than 60 students, and now has six paid employees.
“Most of our parents never thought their child would have the opportunity to do ballet and watching mothers crying tears of joy during the classes was incredibly touching,” Mikayla said.
Mikayla and Zachary feature in the new UQ advertisements.
On Wednesday 22 July, Ms Ivanov will top off her tertiary triumphs by delivering the Valedictorian Address for the faculty of Business, Economics and Law.
“My work with Tippy Toe has changed my life,” Ms Ivanov said. “When we initially ran the five week program as part of our assessment piece, I was overwhelmed by the incredible families we met and the stories they shared.
“Many of our parents never thought their child would have the opportunity to do ballet and watching mothers crying tears of joy during the classes was incredibly touching.”
She credited the support of lecturers at UQ’s Business School for encouraging her to aim high.
“UQ, and in particular the Business School with the course Social Entrepreneurship, taught me that being successful in business and making a difference in the community were not mutually exclusive ideas,” she said.
“You can create change and impact communities while also creating a profit and growing a business.
“They really changed the way I see the world and made me aware of my role as a global citizen.”
Ms Ivanov said she planned to continue to roll out The Tippy Toe Co after she received her Bachelor of Business Management and Commerce with a triple major in Accounting, Marketing and Sustainability.
“We want to continue to grow the school through existing ballet schools to spread the program across Australia.”
She said she initially chose to study at The University of Queensland because she had fallen in love with the campus.
“What I really loved was the fact that I could do a triple major.
“At UQ your study options are unlimited, which was very important to me as I also needed to retain part-time employment.”