TEDx at NYU Abu Dhabi: Challenging the Status Quo

NYU AD students with red X
On April 19, NYU Abu Dhabi’s first TEDx conference – TEDxNYUAD – brings 11 inspirational and innovative talks to the NYU Abu Dhabi community and public.
Most of us have heard of TED Talks. These awe-inspiring, empowering talks revolve around the theme of innovation, change and thinking differently. TED has become a global phenomenon because it provides a platform for people to share their ideas and stories.
TEDx was created in the spirit of TED’s mission: ideas worth spreading. It supports independent organizers who want to create a TED-like event in their own community.
In a university that is still new and building from a blank slate, the student body has many varied and dynamic experiences that go unshared. Within this diverse community, countless students have incredible stories and ideas inspired by their achievements, struggles, aspirations, experiences, interests and passions. This year’s speakers will talk about an array of topics and ideas that question how we view the world and the ideas we hold.
The Speakers
TEDxNYUAD will feature speakers from the United Arab Emirates, Brazil, Chile, Ethiopia, India, Montenegro, Ukraine, United Kingdom, the Netherlands, and Qatar. But the talks go beyond the boundaries of the speakers’ nations and will relate to and resonate with global issues, individual struggles, socio-political matters and technological advancements.
Charlotte De Bekker
Charlotte, a Dutch artist and filmmaker who grew up in Ras Al Khaimah, surrounded by Ikea furniture and caught in hipster angst, will question her previous conceptualizations and attempts at constructing authenticity.
Maitha Al Memari
As a young Emirati woman wearing the Abaya, Maitha is exposed to continuous questions regarding her choice of dress. She will explore how the Abaya is not a form of oppression, but a form of expression.
Sam Ridgeway
An avid traveller with a passion for science and film, Sam will question the idea of ‘home’ and what this means to him.
Hayat Seid
Everyone has a story. How do we make sure that our voices are heard and our stories are told the right way?
Jovan Jovancevic
Jovan who became the youngest competitor at the Montenegro National Youth Chess Competition at the age of five, will talk about the game of blindfold chess, and what it tells us about who we are.
Sara Al Shamlan
A Qatari social entrepreneur, Sara will talk about how curiosity and unlikely interactions with those different from herself led her to reevaluate her life and find a passion worth pursuing.
Vasily Rudchenko
Vasily is a Ukrainian engineering student and technology enthusiast whose team won the UAE Drones for Good Award 2015. He will talk about how innovation should always have a purpose.
Amer Nasr
Amer led one of Brazil’s largest peaceful campaigns against corruption and will talk about how individuals, especially youth, have the potential to change the world.
Mohit Mandal
Through his interactions with the immigrant communities, Mohit will recount the many stories he’s stumbled upon while playing street cricket.
Attilio Rigotti
By combining his passion and love for theater and video games, Attilio will take us on an exciting journey of finding the heroes in ourselves.
Meera Al Agroobi
In high school, Meera was a bully. After having studied psychology, she is today an advocate of social issues in the UAE and will talk about her passion to help young bullies overcome their own evils, and change how schools deal with bullying.

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