Adobe Youth Voices Summit hosts Youth and Educators from 23 countries
Creative young minds from across 23 countries assembled for the AYV Summit in Santa Clara, California during the week of August 12th. Educators and youth selected from various Adobe Youth Voices programs worldwide came together to celebrate creative thinking and share best practices from their regions. India was represented by students and educators from Noida, Bangalore and Kolkata sites that are under the AYV program.
The week began with Lee Hirsch, a documentary filmmaker, officially opening and welcoming students and educators to the AYV Summit. Lee encouraged people to use empathy and creative expression to drive cultural change. This was followed by a tour of the Adobe campus headquarters in San Jose California, by the Adobe employees.
During the course of the week the students immersed themselves in media making. The youth were split into eight groups, teaming up with creative professionals and specialists, sharing their unique skills and talents to develop compelling media pieces that explored the issues that were important to them. 43 Adobe employee volunteers from 19 sites, present for the Corporate Responsibility Summit being held in the same week, were also involved in mentoring these students. India was represented by five champions across CR programs in Noida and Bangalore. “It was an invigorating experience engaging with the exuberant youth from across the globe. Listening to their ideas to address various social issues in their community, free flowing creativity in their thoughts and discussions, and deft use of technology to express their views revealed what they were really capable of.” said Pooja Gupta, AYV Champion Noida.
The youth spent a couple of days shooting relevant footage, recording sound, and finally editing their projects, holding rough-cut review sessions to refine their pieces. The opportunity to work with students from different countries was a grand experience for Bangalore’s Suresh Rangaswamy, from Christel House, Bangalore - “I learnt a lot from this trip, not just how to use software, but also to think more creatively. It was very exciting to meet like-minded youth from different countries, helped me learn a lot about different cultures and that even though we are from different places, we can make a difference in the world around us.”
Lead Educators participated in a design thinking challenge, interviewing clients and brainstorming as well as creating animatics to share their project ideas and findings.
“The summit has opened my mind regarding my role as an educator, and as an individual. I have gained self-confidence, and realize the need to have a positive approach in whatever I do. I have found a change in me towards the teaching-learning process that I need to be creative, to be effective in teaching. Today’s students are tech-savvy and if we teach in a creative way coupled with technology, it will enable the students to understand the depth of the topic and in turn they will also become creative.” – shares Bhuvana Sriram, AYV Educator, DTEA Sr. Sec School.
Thomas Joseph, AYV Educator from Christel House Bangalore, whose team created the concept ‘AYV camera’ in the design thinking challenge, had this to say – “I'm feeling on top of the world right now, meeting so many creative people from around the world, exchanging ideas, and learning new things. Meeting the director of the documentary movie "Bully" has been a life changing experience for me. To learn how a movie was able to create a change in the society, I'm now inspired to do much more than what I was doing - push the limits, push the boundaries. I, now truly believe what a powerful tool we have in our hands. I truly understand the meaning of the term creating with purpose.”
The week ended with youth presenting their final videos, sharing their learnings from the Summit, and the change AYV was bringing to their lives. The closing ceremony saw the AYV 2013 creativity scholars honored, and a special appearance by musical artist and actor, Common, from Common Ground Foundation (CGF). CGF encourages students to explore their creative talent as a key to unlocking their unique gifts.
AYV has reached out to about 132,000 students spanning from Africa to North America and India since its inception in 2006.
Links to Projects created by the youth during the week: