The Pioneers Lab Movie

In 2010, a group of twenty Honors students enrolled in a leadership learning course at the IIS Honours Program of the University of Amsterdam (UvA) and the Free University of Amsterdam(VU). The students had very diverse backgrounds, from the Singaporean army to anthropology and physics, they applied to explore themselves and their world.

Thieu Besselink designed the course as a laboratory for pioneering. With a series of inspiring encounters, an open learning environment and a bucket-load of creative chaos, the students embarked on an unlikely inner and outer journey.

This documentary, directed by Victor van Doorn and Jochem Smit shows the student’s progression from talented scholars, to driven social entrepreneurs and ultimately, directors of their own education.

Does today’s educational system provide the tools, opportunities and enough chaos in order for tomorrow’s pioneers to emerge?

“Amazing, the best hour I spent on education all year”

Sebastian Hirsch, education journalist and reformer

“Beautiful, I was in tears. ..The world was waiting for this kind of film”

Martijn Aslander, life hacker

“The film had me at the edge of my seat. Completely inspiring”

Olga Plokhooij, Netherlands in Dialogue