TEDYouth 2015

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TEDYouth is a day-long event for middle and high school students, with live speakers, hands-on activities and great conversations. Scientists, designers, technologists, explorers, artists, performers (and more!) share short talks on what they do best, serving both as a source of knowledge and inspiration for youth around the globe.

About TEDYouth 2015

TEDYouth 2015 took place at the Brooklyn Museum on Saturday, November 14, from 11am to 6pm. Attendance was free of charge for a total of 400 teenagers from the New York City boroughs between the ages of 13 and 18.

At TEDYouth 2015 — and at more than 100 TEDxYouth events tuning in live online around the globe — young people gathered to explore the event's theme, "Made in the Future". This theme provided youth with new perspectives on their own future job possibilities beyond traditional careers, some of which may not yet exist. TEDYouth 2015 was an opportunity for youth to think about the world in 2035, and to engage with experts who consider the corners of our intangible imagination to be the foundation for our potential future reality. Speakers touched on an array of questions about our future, including:

  • How will artificial intelligence both limit and expand our options?
  • What will matter in the future?
  • As resources diminish, what new materials will we harness or create?
  • Which types of careers will emerge or cease to exist?

Together, we sought to answer these questions from a number of different perspectives — scientific, cultural, technological, educational, artistic, entrepreneurial, environmental and more.

The archive of each session was available for streaming until Thursday, November 19 at 5pm ET.


Speaker line-up

Get to know the amazing scientists, designers, technologists, explorers, artists, performers (and more!) who spoke at TEDYouth 2015.

Adam Steltzner

Adam Steltzner and his team at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab designed the sky crane that landed the Curiosity, the one-ton robotic rover, on Mars in 2012. Before working for NASA, Adam planned to become a rock star … until an encounter with the constellation Orion sparked his curiosity.

TEDYouth speaker: Anna Kaufman
Anna Kaufman

High school junior Anna Kaufman is obsessively organized – her bookshelf at home is alphabetized, and she loves to learn in as many different ways as she can. In fact, some of her biggest lessons have come from her teachers … and her older sister Leah.

Assaf Biderman

Assaf Biderman is the associate director of the SENSEable City Lab at MIT and the founder of Superpedestrian, a technology company focused on personal urban mobility. Along with a team of roboticists, he developed the Copenhagen Wheel, which transforms bikes into powered hybrids.

Avi Rubin

As a computer security expert, Avi Rubin studies how hackers find weaknesses in anything that has electronics … and he also finds ways to help us protect ourselves. Avi is a professor and director at Johns Hopkins’ Information Security Institute.

Betsy McIver Cho

As a kid, Betsy McIver Cho loved to tinker and loved Disneyland. Now she is an associate show electronics engineer at Walt Disney Imagineering, where she designs electronic systems for Disney’s interactive attractions. She loves that her work lets her combine her passions for engineering and theatrical design.

TEDYouth 2015 speaker: Brendon Allen
Brandon Allen

Spoken-word poet and high school senior Brandon Allen dreams of becoming a news anchor and eventually a talk show host. He is a journalist and published writer who loves public speaking as a way to engage with new audiences.

Caleb Harper

Caleb Harper directs the CityFARM in MIT’s Media Lab, where he recently launched the Open Agriculture Initiative -- which uses “food computers” to grow a variety of crops in a controlled environment, allowing farmers to grow anything anywhere.

Carla Diana

Carla Diana considers how things like light, sound and motion shape a robot’s personality and how humans relate to them. She is a product designer and creative consultant at Smart Design’s Interaction Lab, where she spends her time exploring technology through hands-on experiments.

Carla Pugh

Surgeon and educator Carla Pugh teaches her students to develop tactile skills that are crucial to improving surgeries. Now she’s working to make these tests an integral part of medical training. Carla directs the Clinical Simulation Program at the University of Wisconsin Hospital & Clinics.

Carlo Ratti

Carlo Ratti is a civil engineer and architect who directs the SENSEable City Lab at MIT. His lab studies the environments of cities, gathering data on the infrastructure of our cities to help us understand the cities we live in.

TEDYouth 2015 speaker: Chelsea Ha
Chelsea Ha

Chelsea Ha is a passionate environmentalist who hopes to inspire others to take action against climate change. Chelsea does research on the atmosphere and changes in the environment with a weather balloon that she is building herself!

Danit Peleg

Over 2,000 hours, Danit Peleg created the world’s first fully 3D-printed fashion collection. After nine months of experimenting with materials, she designed a full collection, including shoes, to complete her graduate degree at Shenkar College of Engineering and Design in Israel.

Elaine Y. Hsiao

Elaine Y. Hsiao and her lab study the “microbiome,” the colonies of trillions of microbes that live within our bodies and may play an unexpected role in how we feel and behave. Her research covers the immune and nervous systems; she studies how changes in resident microbiota from one system may impact the other.

Gerard Senehi

Gerard Senehi believes that the line between real and unreal is not always well defined. He asks, what if our limits are only an illusion? He is an expert in making the impossible seem possible, as he bends wineglasses and makes pencils levitate. What parts are real? You’ll have to decide for yourself.

Ishita Katyal

Ishita Katyal is the youngest TEDxYouth organizer in the Asia-Pacific region. She believes success comes from wanting happiness in the present moment, and loves to read and write in her spare time. She wrote her book, Simran’s Diary, when she was 8 years old.

Jen Ziemke

Jen Ziemke is an expert on the Angolan Civil War who uses sound to help her explore her data. She is co-director of the Crisis Mappers network, which uses data to explain crises and plan emergency responses. Jen was a Peace Corps member on the Namibian/Angolan border during Angola’s civil war.

Jessica Brillhart

Jessica Brillhart is the principal filmmaker for Jump, Google Cardboard’s new camera technology that uses 16 different video camera feeds to build a 360-degree view of the world. She travels the globe to explore new ways of storytelling through technology.

Jill Heinerth

Jill Heinerth has dived deeper into the planet than any woman in history, and was the first person to swim inside Antarctica’s iceberg caves. She is an underwater filmmaker and photographer who uses her work on never-before-seen places to educate the public about water.

Joey Mazzarino

Sometimes known as Murray Monster, Stinky the Stinkweed, and Papa Bear, Joey Mazzarino was a puppeteer and writer on Sesame Street for many years, starting in 1989. His work has been nominated for several Daytime Emmys and his song “I Love My Hair,” a tribute to his daughter, is a viral sensation on YouTube.

Magda Sayeg

Known as the “mother of yarn bombing,” Magda Sayeg is a street artist who covers everyday objects with colorful knit and crochet work. She loves shaking up the way we see the world around us – maybe making us notice things we hadn’t seen before.

Marian Hill

Philadelphia’s singer-songwriter duo Jeremy Lloyd and Samantha Gongol combine R&B, electronica and saxophone-heavy jazz to create a sultry, classic sound that's guaranteed to get stuck in your head. Their 2015 album Sway has taken off on Spotify and Vine.

Marta Botet Borràs

Marta Botet Borras has been surrounded by books for as long as she can remember. By 11, she started a blog to share her book recommendations; soon after, she started filming and posting her reviews on YouTube. Her BookTube channel is the first video book review series in Catalan.

Mick Ebeling

Mick Ebeling works with a team of programmers, hackers, artists and inventors through his Not Impossible Foundation. One of his projects, EyeWriter, created a low-cost eye-tracking device to help disabled artists draw using only their eyes. His newest project: a 3D-printed prosthetic lab in Sudan called Project Daniel.

Nicole Paris & Ed Cage

Nicole Paris and her father, Ed Cage, became overnight sensations when their beatbox battle “Mentor vs. Apprentice Part 2” went viral. The dynamic duo held a public rematch on ABC’s Good Morning America. You’ll have to be the judge of who wins this round!

TEDYouth 2015 speaker: Parker Goldstein
Parker Goldstein

Parker Goldstein is a high school senior who performed in his high school’s productions of As You Like It and The Diary of Anne Frank and plays second base for the varsity baseball team. He is also an advocate for building safer communities.

Raymond Wang

In 2015, Raymond Wang won the top prize in the Intel Science and Engineering Fair for his invention that circulates fresh air on planes, reducing transmission of germs between passengers by up to 190%. He is the founder of RayCorp.

Sally Aitken

Sally Aitken loves to push trees to their limits and celebrate their resilience. She and her team study genes from different species of trees, to understand how they adapt to a range of extreme (and changing) environmental conditions.

Sarah Parcak

2016 TED Prize winner Sarah Parcak uses satellite imagery to discover archaeological sites. She has worked in Egypt’s Delta, Sinai, and pyramid regions, and her research has been featured on the Discovery Channel. She is a TED Senior Fellow, and she just won the $1 million TED Prize to support her work.

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