The [email protected] conference was held at Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts in Qatar (VCUarts Qatar) on Saturday.
The day-long event for middle and high school students featured “live speakers, hands-on activities and great conversations”, a press statement noted.
The organising committee had received more than 80 students to audition for the conference and conducted a set of performance experiences for the applicants, with a choice of six speakers with various speeches of interest for the targeted group of youth under the age of 20 years.
The list of speakers included Yousef al-Maliki, a student from the secondary stage, and Mohamed Khalid, an engineering student in Education City, in addition to media presenter Asma al-Hammadi, Ola Hijjawi from the Astronomy Chapter of the Qatar University Alumni Association, Alia Issam El-Din, teaching assistant at Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar, and Dr Anwar Fathallah, an active translator on the TED platform.
The six speakers provided an eclectic mix of presentations, each taking less than 18 minutes under the TED organisational guidelines.
The conference’s youth edition is distinguished by being a student initiative fully organised by volunteers from high school students and some undergraduate students, the statement noted. Besides the basic speeches, the conference also included a group of training workshops, an interactive exhibition and a media competition targeting high school students.
The conference comes in partnership with some of the most prominent educational institutions in Qatar, with QatarDebate Centre participating as an organisational partner, Teach for Qatar as an educational partner and Qatar Charity as a community partner. Ibtikar Technology Solutions also participated as a franchise partner, while VCUarts Qatar was a hosting partner.
The conference partnerships also contributed to providing interesting and distinguished content through the training workshops and interactive exhibition, with the aim of enriching the experience of the participating students and developing their skills in various fields, the statement added.
QatarDebate Centre, a member of Qatar Foundation, stressed the importance of the youth initiative by saying: “We are very proud of all the youth efforts that have contributed to organising the TEDx AlDafna youth conference.The conference has provided leadership and volunteer opportunities for young people through its creative way to spread ideas that contributes to young people’s awareness and motivation.”
TED is a nonprofit organisation dedicated to spreading ideas through short speeches, known as TED Talks.
TEDx is a programme of local, self-organised events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience.
At a TEDx event, TED Talks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group.