Selfmade Aruba by Mauro Caralps: “Create the best version of you”

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Mauro Caralps is not your average young man. He is willing to look into himself and think outside of the box. The (21)-year-old senior, studying Hospitality and Tourism Management Faculty at the University of Aruba, wanted to distinguish himself from the others by diving into self-improvement and education aside from the regular coursework. “It started with myself conducting interviews and reading books to grow in knowledge but it grew fast into helping others. Now my goal is to empower the younger generation with self-improvement skills and building resilience by knowledge. That is how Selfmade Aruba began.”

Selfmade Aruba is a new podcast with the aim of educating and motivating youth achieve their dreams and become the best version of themselves. Successful Arubans like artist Jeon, fitness instructor & nutritionist Rene Wild, entrepreneur Carlos Roos, businessman Jean-Carlo Espinal, dance teacher Pierangely Wever sat at his table to elaborate on their way to a happy life. “The initiative applies to different areas like business, psychology … everything that can help making a person better themselves.” But that is not all of it for Caralps. When he was on Colegio Arubano high school, he noticed that many books on the reading list are from the 20th century, classical, not so interesting for students to read. “Although it is important to practice with classic literature, I think it could be balanced with some relevant books on the list that can support students in their future.” He is contacting the school to see if they are open to discuss this. “For example, many students from the Caribbean go and study in the Netherlands and fail due to the extra stress from factors that are outside of their studies, like managing their own finances. Aruban Franklin Seute, 21, wrote a book about his experience in the past 2-to-3 years in Holland and how he dealt with his personal finances. This is a topic that will for sure benefit students.” Caralps has an agreement with Plaza Bookshop, where he advises them on ordering certain books on self-improvement which he promotes in his program under Book Review Club. “What I really want to do is to share knowledge and having people of my age opening up their mind to learn apart from traditional education. Reading books, searching for articles or looking at documentaries in their free time can enrich their lives.”

Reach out

Caralps started this project in June, when he had spare time because of the pandemic, and he felt the need to share his experience. “I saw that most people focus at a later age to improve themselves but not many start at the age of 18-25. Coming across this information might occur a bit boring and dry to them, therefore I try to make it attractive it in a way that I find it appealing myself.”There are skills you need to learn outside of school to be able to face the world in his opinion. “Take myself, I want to go into sales and said to myself, once I finish studying, it won’t really prepare me for the job. Also my fellow students will all have the same diploma as me. But I will go up against people that have years of experience so let me stack up on knowledge that will help me move forward on this topic.” He started looking into books about sales, interviewing sales people and learned so much that he wanted to share this. “I saw my friends dealing with certain problems, where I found ways to overcome them just by reading or interviewing and learning from other people. Initially I said if I can only help one person that would have been enough but we got way more than that. I am doing this with two friends and we are even approached now by high schools and my own university to give lectures. My goal is to reach out to a younger crowd.”

If you are interested to know more about Selfmade Aruba, check them out at Facebook: Selfmade.Aruba, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and soon also on YouTube.