Ask a 10-year-old how they envisage their future career and, in 2017, the answer you receive may veer away a long way from the traditional. Dreams of footballing glory are not as common as they once were, ruling the kingdom as a princess is, like, so 2007 and pop stars? Too much press. Instead, children today aspire to be vegan butchers, simulated astronauts, or even "Lego professors of play".
But for 10-year-old Aedhan Brown, becoming a professor of play wasn’t something he imagined for his future, but his present.
When the young boy from Aylesbury heard about an opening for a "Lego professor of play" at the University of Cambridge, he decided that, as an experienced lego enthusiast, he was perfect for the £83,981-a-year role.
He wasted no time setting his sights on the highly publicised role, saying in his application letter: "I am the best candidate for the job of professor of play in education because I am 10 years old and I love to play."
'You are so good at Lego'
Although, sadly, his application was unsuccessful, Perrett Laver, the company handling the recruitment, sent him this heart-warming response.
A thousand thanks to you for sending to us your application for the Lego Professorship at the University of Cambridge. There was so much which was impressive about your application. We loved:
- that you are so good at Lego
- that you can hyperfocus and yet also explain things
- that you have shown that you can read about research into a subject like autism so thoroughly
- that you have such a clear vision for the future and especially that you have the entrepreneurship to want to own your own gaming company AND yet that the reason for that is to make all children happy.
Thank you for your inspiring letter.
I'm sorry to say that the University has told us that they want the Lego Professor to be someone who has a PhD and who has already published books and lots of articles and all sorts of things like that. There were about 200 people who wanted to be the Lego Professor and the University will only interview 4 or 5. So I think that this time you probably won't be invited forward to be interviewed.
BUT let me promise you two things and say a third:
1. When we have had our meeting with the "Board of Electors" at the University, we will send you a formal letter so you know for sure. (I'm sorry that the letter may be a little dull but we have to do this as part of our work on the job process.)
2. We will also send a special note to the Lego Foundation to tell them about your interest. Who knows? - they might want to stay in touch with you for future possibilities.
3. You are just the sort of 'future leader' that Perrett Laver likes to know about - this is very exciting! You spotted an interesting job opportunity and you were willing not just to think about it but to DO something about it. This is EXACTLY the sort of thing which will be great for you as you become a leader yourself. This is the way that you will find a job where three things come together:
a. What you love doing
b. What you're really good at and
c. What will help other people.
And when you do that, then life really is worthwhile.
With many thanks for your interest and with very best wishes,
David and all at Perrett Laver
Aedhan wasn't disapointed however, as the letter was full of praise and advice.
"I felt really excited (about the letter) and there was some inspirational things in there like I would be a good future leader,' he told Mix96.
"I'm inspired, and I'm going to try again when I have a PhD I guess!"