…and how it’s different from recruiting adults.

A group of young people, all wearing event-themed shirts, stands on a stage, claps, and smiles.
A group of young people, all wearing event-themed shirts, stands on a stage, claps, and smiles.
Our 2019 TEDxYouth@Columbia Team thanking our audience and volunteers.

The following is taken from a few emails I hurriedly wrote to a fellow TEDx organizer who is organizing a TEDxYouth event. She’d organized plenty of (outstanding) adult-focused TEDx events, but it was her first time working with TEDxYouth. Below are some of my suggestions on recruiting youth team members accumulated after 8 years’ experience creating and supervising 20-person TEDxYouth teams.

General advice

  • Invest time upfront in determining what qualities you’re looking for in an ideal team member.
  • Start recruitment as far out as you can.
  • Ask your networks to nominate people who they think would be good fits. …

I want to save us both time.

Below is a quick explanation written by Dennis R. Mortensen, CEO of x.ai, of how long it takes the average person to set up a meeting over email. After you read it, hopefully you see why I think it’s not a good use of anyone’s time—it’s truly a job that should be taken over by robots. It’s been lightly edited for clarity.

x.ai tested how long it takes—cumulatively—to set up a meeting in a setting where humans where asked to do nothing but schedule meetings using their email client, and found that it takes a full 17 minutes on average…

This is our TEDxYouth@Columbia Team’s styleguide, which I created to standardize our communication team-wide. Comments and suggestions are strongly encouraged! Please also feel free to use this for your own projects.

Why should you care?

We are, at our core, a group of hard-working, curious people working towards one shared goal. Consistency is professional — when an external partner receives communication from two different Team members using the same tone and same styles, they don’t think twice. However, someone could be confused and even frustrated if they got an email from two Team members using different tones and styles — this would make our…

Why I decided to bring the nationwide hackathon to my city and what it’s about.

About two years ago, I went to my first-ever hackathon: the National Day of Civic Hacking. I wasn’t able to participate (I got there late), but I volunteered for a little while, serving snacks and watching other people who were just as interested in coding and design work away, furiously drinking Mountain Dew in an effort to stay awake. In the morning, I watched each team give their presentation about their product, and the more I watched, the more I fell in love with the idea of a hackathon. …

Kevin Rabinovich

Ideas, youth, tech, design, & education. Founder & curator, @TEDxYouthCola. Formerly @ClemsonUNICEF, @StuSpace, @CodeDay Columbia. http://kevinrabinovich.me

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