On May 21, SAS had its first TEDxYouth event – one which was widely appreciated and discussed across school grounds. The theme, “Breaking Barriers,” along with a commendable range of student and faculty speakers, were just a few factors in the event’s success. TED itself is known to break barriers with every talk they share with the world. Renowned TED talks from the company explore a variety of talks. Somehow, each one introduces a new concept, philosophy or theory. The talks are intriguing, intimate, or simply eye-opening.
Whether they expose a new scientific discovery or explore an individual’s personal growth, the following TED talks have something for everyone.
The Psychology of Your Future Self
A Harvard psychologist, Dan Gilbert, uses humor and his bold persona to reveal how humans make split decisions that inevitably affect their futures. He believes we are under a constant “illusion” that the person we are today is who we will always be. This talk is intended to show how we are actually changing on a daily basis – and every decision we make today will change who we are tomorrow.
The Beauty and diversity of Muslim life
In a short, five-minute talk, Bassam Tariq works to change staunch stereotypes of his religion, Islam. Through his personal career choices, as a blogger, filmmaker, and halal butcher, he depicts the beauty in Muslim life and shares this in his talk. He was initially “frustrated” by the views of the “American Muslim experience” and desires to create a different image for these communities across America. Tariq’s belief in empathy is the underlying tone of the talk, leading viewers to feel it through his retellings.
What it takes to be a great leader
As a long working professional, Roselinde Torres knows what it takes to make a good, 21st century leader. From the beginning of her talk, she breaks the stereotypical image of a strong leader – someone who is cold and unyielding. She launches into what actually makes a leader successful professionally and personally – there are distinct moves one can take to achieve this. The idea of “thriving” is continuously mentioned, in relation to a global and digital workplace.
How we’re priming some kids for college – and others for prison
In a more unconventional talk, sociologist Alice Goffman focuses on the contradiction between two prominent institutions: college and jail. The journey between childhood and adulthood is a crucial one, she explains. Even with “relatively minor infractions,” a student’s life can take a turn for the worse. Her solemn words and powerful language contributes to the effectiveness of the talk – and keeps the reader quietly listening until the end.
The day I stood up alone
While growing up in Kenya, Boniface Mwangi was taught that being a “coward” was the strong thing to do. Group mentality and “turning the other cheek” is something we all face in society every day, in the classes we attend, in the environment we grow up in. With a quiet humility, Mwangi reveals the extremes of these mentalities. He chose to stand up alone and fight for his beliefs during Kenyan elections, facing violence for his courageous actions. The talk is both emotional and empowering, conveyed with humor and a smile.