Nomad is quite a new word in our dictionary. Yet, the concept is evolving fast and so does a nomad community around the world, students being a great part of it. The Student Nomad is a community of students who are following, or getting ready to start a nomad lifestyle. The community has recently joined #GoRemote campaign. Its founder, Ryan Thorpe, is extremely passionate about the idea. He is a student nomad himself and inspires other young people to do the same: travel the world, exploring different countries and cultures, study and work at the same time.
T: Ryan, what made you think of becoming a nomad? At what point did you decide that this is the way you want to go?
The concept has always fascinated me, since a young age I've always wanted to be completely free from society, to be in control of my own life, to direct my own path, there is a sense of real accomplishment and achievement within that. We are happiest when we are free and at the end of the day isn't that what we are all striving for, happiness? So when I escaped the traditional working world to go study in multiple countries I was opened up to this freedom even more and had the time to create and learn the skills, meet mentors and those who would help me on this path of achieving my dreams, of being completely free.
T: You've mentioned that you're a self-funded student. What are the sources of your income that enable you to cover all the expenses?
Since I was 12 I have been working: in clothes shops, restaurants, bars, teaching and selling my skills online. Always hustling to get that extra bit of money each week and saving it. Over time it begins to add up. On top of that, I began reaching out to businesses in my local area who provide financial support to young people who show passion and potential. So, rather than sit around, I emailed every company which provided such a scheme and created as many opportunities for myself as possible to get extra financial backing along with my studies. Another factor is studying in Europe. Despite being in different countries this was a far cheaper alternative than going to study in the UK, in short, the amount I would spend on 3 years around Europe equates to nearly 1 year in the UK, and at the same time, I’m gaining an international experience with a network around the world. Overall, work extremely hard and hustle with every opportunity that comes your way or you create yourself. Don't sit around, get moving.
T: How do you manage to combine the studies and development of the Student Nomad community? What do you see it becoming in the future?
I ask myself that same question every day. I think the key is to learn how to maximize your efficiency. Shortcuts to learning are something I am really educating myself on now. Rather than study long, study smart. You learn the same content in a much shorter period of time whilst having the time to work on your side hustles and projects. Where you are applying again what you have learned in a physical context, reinforcing what you have learned.
I have many plans and ideas of what this community will become, now it is a case of refining those plans and putting them into action. I am looking for certain skill sets to develop an app, if you are reading this and can connect with my message, please get in touch.
T: You've managed to reach almost 45 000 followers on Instagram in less than a year. What was key to such a success?
Constant engagement, activity, and good quality content. Once you start you must be consistent and talk with everyone that comes across your feed. Don't see it as a lot of work, see it as every person you speak with is an opportunity which can open new doors to new experiences and, potentially, a greater life. You'll be surprised how much that makes you want to engage with your followers even more. On top of that, I have many other methods I am sure would interest those struggling with social media engagement and building their very own community. You can forward an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I can offer advice, methods, and tactics to grow such an account organically.
T: You've already traveled quite a bit. Is there any place you liked more than others and where do you plan to go next?
I spent almost 1 year studying in Barcelona, that place was brilliant, the food, the weather, the nightlife, the beach, and the mountains. This city has everything at a lower cost of living than the north of Europe. The lifestyle really does fit this nomadic mind I have, always longing for new experiences and creating memories. Barcelona is alive with energy and passion which, for me, is very relatable. Where I plan to go next is Frankfurt in Germany and then off to Thailand and Bali to work on some really exciting startup projects and connect with co-working spaces from around the world to really push my ideas and dreams further.
T: What is your advice to the students who are just thinking of becoming nomads?
Don't be intimidated by this new working concept, it may seem unfamiliar and daunting but in reality, it is just a new age way of thinking. If you have the determination and confidence to be in control of your own life and are willing to work hard for it, then the sky is the limit. In today's society people are finding it even more difficult to get on the working ladder, a lack of experience being the problem on top of that mounting student debt. So why not hustle and create your own experiences. Build your own portfolio of work you have accomplished, earn extra money on the side, maybe then you will be able to get the job you want. Or, maybe, you enjoy what it is you are doing on your own, then you carry on and get better and more skilled, build your own business. Either way, all it takes is time and a lot of effort but I tell you it will always be worth it.
T: Why did you get interested in #GoRemote? What made you decide to join?
For me the opportunity to work alongside an interesting start-up company which combines both my passions and my dreams of the future working remotely around the world. This platform and the connections that come with it really do inspire me to further push this “being a nomad” idea and the future of the workplace. As an advocate of new age thinking and following your passion and dreams. Transformify represents what I am striving to achieve. I know worldwide there are young ambitious people like myself screaming out for this opportunity to fulfill their potential and actively use their skills to help fund their life goals. If you are willing to work hard and have a talent no matter how small this platform, I hope, will soon give you the opportunity to build experience, make connections and combine a lifestyle with your job.