Tag Archives: students

Top 10 Part Time Jobs Opportunities for Everyone


It is rightly said that time is money. There is not a single hour in the day when you are not free. Then why do we not indulge ourselves in the activities that would pass our time in addition to making some money?

There are ample of part time activities that you could employ so as to make some money. Your income will be supplemented and you will not get bored.

There is no particular age limit for part time jobs. Anybody from any place and at any time can work part time.

Although there are dozens of part time opportunities but here we discuss about only 10 opportunities for different kind of people. So no matter you are a kid or student or a housewife or even retired, you will find something for you.

Part time Jobs for Students

  • Tutor

Tutor at some institute is a very favorable option for students. In this world of computers, there have been many computer coaching institutes being set up all over and not all people know to use computer. If any student has basic knowledge about the computer hardware, windows and Microsoft office, he could be a tutor at some computer coaching institute. He could also be a tutor of some normal coaching class also. He could teach the students who are younger to him. He will not only teach younger students but also improve his teaching skills which could prove useful for his future.

  • Working

Working is also one favorable option for students. Since, they do not have expertise knowledge about the things; they could become sales person at the shops. Book stores, Women Accessories shop and many others require sales person. A student could join one and earn money. There are many pharmacies that require staff who could work for them until late night. Hence, if there is any pharmacy nearby to the house then he could work there as a sales person. Study should not be neglected.

Part time Jobs for Housewives

  • Tuitions

Most of the house wives are free during the afternoon time. Would it be not advisable to start coaching a group of students during that time and earn money? There is no need to find a place; she could start it at your own home. She could start with a small batch in the beginning and gradually increase the number of students. In this manner, she will get the satisfaction of earning and also her education will be utilized for a good purpose.

  • Small scale factory

There are number of small home business ideas for woman. Women and cooking go hand in hand. Home-made products are not only loved by many but are also in much demand. Pickle, papad, ladoos and many more eatables can be made at home during the free time and then can be sold to the nearby shops and stores. A house wife can also sell them herself at home. She will make some money and will get noticed for her cooking skills. She should have a valid license.

Part time Jobs for Working People

  • Online Jobs

Almost all the people who work have a basic knowledge of computers. Online jobs serve best for the people who are working as they do not have any free time during their regular jobs working hours. They could take up writing, data entry, typing, designing, surveying etc. If you are one among them then you could take up some online job and work during the night time. However, deadlines need to be followed. Hence, be careful!

  • Freelancer

A working person could also be a freelancer like a writer, a photographer, a journalist or for that matter anybody. He will be paid for the work he does. He will be accountable directly to the client. Hence, there will not be more pressure about the deadlines or late delivery. Such a person ought to have numerous contacts for this purpose.

Part time Jobs for Retired People and Kids

  • Counseling

This world is full of miseries. No person is happy for what he has. He wants somebody to guide him when he is low and help him overcome the life’s obstacles. As the retired people are old and they have a lot of experience about life and also work, they could become a part time counselor. If you are thinking of becoming one, a small room or balcony would be enough for you to do the work.

Business

A retired person can join hands with any of his friend in setting up a small business or shop. It can be a garment shop, a general store or a book store. He could employ some people for the overall maintenance and sale of the goods. He will require a lot of capital for the shop. Hence, it would be advisable to think wisely before investing money.

Part time Jobs for Disabled People

  • Handicrafts Business

Everybody loves handicrafts and best out of waste items. They not only look chic but also attract eyes of many. Disabled people can make such items and then sell them to gift shops or could hold an exhibition at their respective homes. They could also stitch some pillow covers with embroidery, fabric painting, rubber paintings, glass paintings etc.

  • A visiting professor

The time when the disabled people would sit at home without education has gone. There are many schools and colleges that have been set up in order to promote education in such people. A disabled person could work as a visiting professor or teacher in such schools and share his knowledge. Apart from the payment, he will also be showered numerous blessings by the parents and other people.

 

Code danger: Crackdown of California hacker bootcamps is no good for students


Code danger: Crackdown of California hacker bootcamps is no good for students
Shutterstock

This is a guest post by education research fellow Michelle R. Weise 

I’ve always wished I knew I how to code. Thankfully, today, the opportunities to learn how abound through various online providers — many of them, free. For even more motivated learners, there are vibrant learning pathways called coding bootcamps. The premise is simple: students pay anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000 and learn Ruby on Rails, HTML 5 and CSS, JavaScript, Agile Development, and other languages in an intense 9 or 12-week period. Afterwards, they’re ready to apply for developer positions at major technology companies.

In the state of California, however, something sinister is brewing. Christina Farr in a recent VentureBeat article and follow-up revealed that the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education is threatening to close down Dev Bootcamp, Hackbright Academy, Hack Reactor, App Academy, Zipfian Academy, and other bootcamps for non-compliance (BPPE is the regulator that oversees academic and vocational postsecondary programs in the state).

Now, admittedly, these bootcamps are not cheap. Hack Reactor, for example, charges $17,000 for the program, but graduates of the program — 99 percent of them — are offered jobs at companies like Adobe and Google where the average salary is over six figures, easily covering the not-so-inexpensive cost of tuition. Of course, the question is worth asking what students do with the tuition payments if they drop out of the program, and this is certainly BPPE’s concern when it comes to consumer safety and fraud prevention.

Part of the fuss about compliance, however, also revolves around BPPE’s strictures that demand a static curriculum and instructors with at least three years of teaching experience. When it comes to coding bootcamps, however, these learning providers are helping people skill up for an evolving labor market in the tech industry and therefore, the curriculum may not necessarily remain the same from week to week. In fact, what makes these programs attractive to both students and employers is that they are nimble and adaptive to rapid changes in technology.

Moreover, these bootcamps make it a point to recruit real industry leaders to teach their students. What is prized in one context — direct industry experience — does not necessarily align with the way in which more traditional programs value teaching experience and credentials.

The timing of this regulatory enforcement is particularly ironic, as formal comments in the education sector have been submitted in reaction to President Obama’s proposed college rating system. All sides rejecting the idea of identifying performance metrics and quantifying student outcomes. No big surprise, but because institutional quality is rarely tied to specific student-learning outcomes, we continue to rely on regulators and agencies like the BPPE or national and regional accreditors to oversee our postsecondary system of education.

Yet, here we have an agency, presumably an arbiter of institutional quality, trying to shut down learning providers with truly impressive success rates and tangible learning outcomes such as job attainment. Indeed, regardless of the fact that these bootcamps have only been around for a few years, it is doubtful that traditional institutions or ones in compliance with BPPE could boast similarly high placement rates for their graduates in jobs directly related to their fields of study.

The battle between regulators and innovators is not at all new. Disruptive innovations tend to reside in this uneasy space and find their footholds by circumventing existing regulations. This is because regulations most often sustain the status quo, and in the case of higher education, licensure boards or accrediting agencies are incentivized to uphold incumbent institutions rather than usher in new models that could threaten more entrenched and established colleges and universities.

Disruptive innovations are not inherently good or bad, but in this particular case, it is regrettable that our outdated mechanisms of quality control will likely abrogate a dynamic and cost-effective workforce solution. Such stalemates between regulators and private or for-profit enterprises are bad for the people who matter the most: the students. Coding bootcamps offer viable and proven pathways to employment. For all of our talk about unemployment and jobs, BPPE is cracking down on innovative solutions that empower citizens in the community to have a fighting chance at high-skills, high-wage opportunities in our state.

head 2Dr. Michelle R. Weise is a Senior Research Fellow at the Clayton Christensen Institute studying the theory of disruptive innovation and its unique ability to clarify the changing academic terrain in higher education. Her work focuses on competency-based learning, student-learning outcomes, workforce solutions, and public-private partnerships.

http://venturebeat.com/2014/02/14/code-danger-crackdown-of-california-hacker-bootcamps-is-no-good-for-students/

40 Best Business School Profs Under 40


Business school professors at top institutions are under intense pressure. And it comes from all sides–the publish-or-perish demands of academia, the university administrators wrapped up in rankings, and ambitious students determined to squeeze every cent out of a $100,000+ investment.

Young professors face added stress: Most are decades younger than their tenured colleagues and only a few years older than their students. They have to prove themselves to MBAs, faculty, and peers in their respective fields. However, a select few thrive in this academic crucible, outperforming senior teaching staff, winning the admiration of their students, and producing standout scholarship.

Poets&Quants’ “Top 40 Under 40″ recognizes these rising stars, who represent elite schools from around the world. These uncommon profs have excelled in research while overcoming the green-professor label in the classroom. To uncover this remarkable group of men and women, Poets&Quants asked B-school officials, faculty, students, and alumni for their top picks and put out an open nomination.

The results poured in from U.S. heavyweights like Harvard Business School, lesser-known programs flung across the country, and a handful of international institutions, such as Europe’s ESSEC and IE business schools. Some MBA students organized Facebook polls to select their top prof nomination; others wrote vivid descriptions and robust arguments for why their instructors deserved consideration. Research chops were important, but Poets&Quants gave more weight to teaching–even the best researchers must convey their material compellingly to be effective in the classroom.

These young professors represent a wide variety of backgrounds and disciplines, ranging from economics to behavioral science, as well as marketing to entrepreneurship. They hail from the United States, Great Britain, Germany, Canada, India, China, Mexico, and Belgium, among others. Their interests range from big data to entertainment marketing to negotiation strategy, the latter subject expertly taught by Harvard Business School’s Deepak Malhotra (pictured above).

However, a few common characteristics cut through the whole group: Most, if not all, of the top profs leverage their youthful energy and Generation Y knowledge to create an engaging classroom environment. They naturally build genuine and meaningful relationships with their students, and they pursue another profession or serious hobby on the side.

Take, for instance, Leslie Robinson, 38, of Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business. The slight professor of business administration is one of the few instructors to make a repeat appearance on the ”Top 40 Under 40″–an accomplishment that reflects an outstanding academic and teacher as well as an all-around incredible person. Robinson is credited with “bringing accounting to life” for her students–a task many would put on par with a miracle. From reviewing students’ backgrounds before the first day of class to running with MBAs in Reach the Beach, a 200-mile overnight relay, LesRob (as she’s affectionately called) has inspired a near cult-like adoration among her students–an entire class once serenaded her with Simon & Garfunkel’s “Mrs. Robinson.”

Other “Top 40 Under 40″ profs share Robinson’s zest for connecting with students through extra-curricular activities and athleticism. Duke University’s Bill Mayew played varsity basketball at UNC–Wilmington and still shoots hoops with MBA candidates, often blocking their shots in student-versus-faculty games. Not to be outdone, Greg Fisher, 37, of Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business has 45 marathons and 16 ultra-marathons under his shoes. The South African is also an Ironman triathlete, thrice over.

Both inside and outside the classroom, Poets&Quants’ ”Top 40 Under 40″ are influencers in their fields while having a meaningful impact on their students’ lives. And arguably all of them are just getting started. If their previous successes are any indication, these top profs will be shaping business education and MBA futures for years to come.

To see the full list of our 40-under-40 business school professors, check out PoetsandQuants.com:

Posted by:John A. Byrne

Soshitech.com – An Email Interview With @BrianAdams_2 Creator Of @MyCampusApp


What is the MyCampus App?

MyCampus is a iPhone app for college students that gives them the ability to buy and sell items with other nearby students. It is what we like to refer to as social commerce in which you know a bit more about the buyer/seller as well as providing students with a private messaging system. By doing these we add a bit more transparency to the peer to peer market when compared to Craigslist.

How many downloads do you have? 

Number of downloads is currently N/A as we haven’t officially launched yet. There is about 250 Beta testers at the moment as we continue to refine the product and its offerings. I believe we are currently on the third build of the application. While the number of downloads is important for mobile products, I feel that more important metrics for a marketplace would include- # of items posted for sale, value of those items, % of items that actually sold and DAU.
How much do you charge for each download?
MyCampus is a free application to download. As with most marketplaces I have a few different options to produce revenue but my main focus is to build an active community of buyers and sellers. Because without those the planned revenue model won’t be feasible.
How long has this app been in the app store? 
Just a couple of weeks. Although it is still in beta I decided to put it into the App Store. The reason for this is that distributing betas to your testers is somewhat of a broken process with many individuals getting confused about the entire test flight process which requires sending your UDID. By having it in the App Store i can simply send something the link when they request it.
Are you working on anything else?
Yes, I’m currently working on a couple of different things. Aside from being a full-time (20-credit hour) student at Ohio University, I still find time to maintain existing projects/endeavors and new ones. I still maintain BobcatClassifieds.org (Where the idea of MyCampus originated), I see pretty consistent usage from students seeking housing, roommates, and sublets. Since it was founded in late 2012 it’s had a little over 14,000 unique visitors from Athens, OH (where Ohio University is located & has a student population of 20,000). I decided to keep this website running as it does product some revenue, and it does add true value to some of the students here at Ohio University. I’m also working on another mobile marketplace as well, while not hyper-local it will offer the transparency and ease of use. Think Poshmark for men. I have a team of 3 working on this along with myself.

Are you in this project alone?

Yes MyCampus and BobcatClassifieds.org are both solo endeavors of my own. I do have interns who primarily focus on marketing via social media. I do plan to have campus reps at specific universities once we do launch.

Do you have any backers?

Yes, during the Summer of 2013 I participated in an accelerator where I received $20,000 in seed funding. That allowed enough of a runway to get through the program and a few months to get the initial product ready. 

 

The 20% Project (like Google) In My Class


I recently assigned a new project to my 11th grade English students: The 20% Project. Although it’s called a “project”, that term is merely for student understanding and lack of a better word. This project is based on the “20 percent time” Google employees have to work on something other than their job description. It has been well documented, and Google has exponentially grown as a company while giving this 20 percent time.

An Influential Idea

Katherine von Jan explains how Google’s idea came to be in her article, “Pursue Passion: Demand Google 20% Time at School”:

“Google’s “20% Time”, inspired by Sergey Brin’s and Larry Page’s Montessori School experience, is a philosophy and policy that every Google employee spend 20% of their time (the equivalent of a full work day each week) working on ideas and projects that interest that employee. They are encouraged to explore anything other than their normal day-to-day job. As a result 50% of all Google’s products by 2009 originated from the 20% free time, including Gmail. Real break-through happens when we are free from others’ expectations and driven by individual passion.”

When I read her article, and finished Dan Pink’s book Drive, I had to seriously reconsider what I was doing with my students. Extrinsic motivation can only go so far in education, and above everything else I want my students to be people who enjoy learning. However, as educators many times we are constrained by curriculum and standards. This idea came and went during the fall months before resurfacing this December.

In December two things happened that made me decide almost immediately that this had to happen. First, I was part of the curriculum process at my school and really started to delve into the “why we do what we do” questions that elude me most of the time during the daily grind. I also was reading texts about “inquiry based learning” and the “understanding by design” framework. Most teachers would be ecstatic if one of their former students got a job at Google. So…were we preparing students to eventually get this type of job?

Second, I was challenged by Thomas Gaffey (he’s the best math teacher I’ve ever met @tgaffey) to do “new things in new ways” at the Microsoft Innovative Educator program. The 20% time seemed like a new way to engage and motivate students to learn. If we want to prepare students in high school to be life-long learners, assets to their communities, and able to take a successful next step in their academic lives (i.e. college)…then this project would not only change my pedagogy, but also their view on learning after high school.

Assigning the 20% Time

The day after winter break I “assigned the project”. In essence, high school students have spent most of their academic lives being told what to do. Their grades are then dependent on how well they completed the assigned tasks. Most teenagers spend their free time doing things they are “not told to do”. For example, most parents aren’t yelling at their son to play video games, or at their daughter to spend three hours on Facebook. These actions are done because teenagers want to do them (and in part because they are told many times not to do this). My class agreed that most teenagers “want to do what they want to do, and not what others tell them”.

So this project, I said, was me telling them to do something that they want to do, with their time that it is usually spent doing what other people want them to do (that’s a mouthful). The guidelines were simple. Here is the handout:

The 20% Project*

1. For the rest of the year, 20% of your time in my class will be spent working on something you want to work on.

2. It has to be some type of learning, and you have to document it (journal etc).

3. You’ll present your accomplishments to the class twice (and will not be graded on it).

4. That’s it. Have fun. Find your passion. Explore it. Enjoy learning what you want.

X___________________________________________

Mass confusion set in. Most of my students were trying to figure out what the catch was, asking questions like: “So what are we getting credit for?”, “What kinds of things can we do?”, “Why aren’t we being graded?”, and “I don’t get it Mr. J, what are we supposed to be doing?”

After a few minutes more of explanation my students began to come around. I was not going to grade them on this project, but I am going to keep them accountable. Many times in education we believe the only way to hold students accountable is by giving some form of assessment. For this project, they’ll be documenting their learning through writing (also, possible podcasts or video journals), and they will present to the class their “accomplishments” at the end of the 3rd and 4th quarters.

Accountability, Standards, and Curriculum

This type of accountability covers the five major standards of Literature Arts: writing, reading, speaking, listening, and viewing. Even better it hits on most of these specific Pennsylvania 11th Grade Reading and Writing Standards.

Finally, I’ll also tie in their next two “independent reading assignments” to this project, having them choose texts that will help them during the 20% time. We won’t be missing out on any curriculum because of this project, rather it will be a supplement to the learning already taking place in my classroom.

Are some of my students still confused? Yes. Are many of them excited? Yes. Will this idea/project be a success? I don’t know.

I do know that in a year and a half my 11th graders will be faced with the prospect of “doing what they want to do” whenever they want. Many students can’t handle the freedom given at college (or real life) and struggle. Many students also excel with this freedom. The 20% time should give my students the small opportunity (I’m only one class out of their busy day) to explore their individual passions before they graduate. I’m excited to see what this time brings, and whatever happens…I’ll keep you posted.

Written by

Writing “20% Time in Education” book. K-12 Tech Staff Developer running a 1:1 initiative. Football & Lax Coach. Founder @edismylife. Author. Speaker.

From 0-350 In Three Years


Image from USACS.Rutgers.edu

Image from USACS.Rutgers.edu
https://medium.com/tales-from-the-front/991501eba5c7

How we’ve taken the Rutgers CS community from non-existent to East Coast powerhouse.

Back when I first declared my CS major at Rutgers three years ago, the community was a far cry from the vibrant and passionate one that characterizes Rutgers today. When I started, Rutgers computer science was a disparate collection of students who scarcely got together in groups larger than four people.

Since then, the community has grown by leaps and bounds; its members have launched startups, taken second in the inaugural MLH season, and founded both a semi-annual hackathon and a semi-annual tech meetup. Now that I have 1.5 feet out the door at Rutgers, I wanted to take a look what factors came together these past three years to change Rutgers CS from a scattered community to the massive group of developers it is today. In the process, I hope that our success can provide some ideas for people hoping to create a similar culture at their school.

We got a physical space for students to socialize in

When you hear “campus computer labs”, it generally conjures up unappealing images like this:

Although there is a fair amount of that at Rutgers, one of our labs is quite different. A few years back a Rutgers employee named Lars Sorrenson decided to convert one of our CS labs into a collaborative learning space. The result was the CAVE, a CS lab which looks something like this.

Although the CAVE isn’t exactly a productive work environment, its design has made the room a CS community hub at Rutgers. The CAVE serves as a great place for workshops and tutoring, but its most important role is as a place for students to meet and hangout between classes. Sometimes they’ll discuss programming, but other times they will just play video games or watch the latest Game of Thrones episode on the giant TV. Through it all, familiar faces from class become acquaintances, acquaintances become friends, and those friendships form the basis for a strong community of developers at Rutgers.

What any university can do: Create a comfortable physical space for students to hang out in and get to know each other. If you can convert an old computer lab, that’s great; if not, try looking for other options to get people in the same space together.

HackRU was started and held regularly

Although now there are a fair number of Rutgers students who regularly travel to hackathons, three years ago you would have been pressed to find more than a handful who even knew what a hackathon was. HackRU initially started out as a modest attempt to grow this small handful, but since then it has grown to engage 250+ students every semester. In the process, it has helped hugely in building community by bringing hacker culture to students at Rutgers.

As the attendance at HackRU demonstrates, there is a large group of students who are either too busy, too intimidated, or simply unaware of hackathons that are going on around the country. By creating an on-campus hackathon, the organizers of HackRU have been able to bring these students together and get them excited about building projects in a way that didn’t happen before. This is not only awesome because it grows the skills of young developers, but also because it shows all the attendees that they’re a part of a larger Rutgers developer community.

What any university can do: Throw a hackathon at your school, no matter where you are. Start by targeting just students at your university and then grow it from there. If you don’t think it’s worthwhile, have a look at what a HackMIT organizer had to say about her experiences.

We created culture based on learning and positivity

Tess Rinearson wrote an awesome article a while back about how CS
is a community that is focused on building each other up, and we’ve tried to make that very evident at Rutgers. As many community leaders have grown and become more skilled, they have started to focus on helping underclassmen improve their skills and encouraging them to work on side projects.

From their very first CS course, students are introduced to the idea that
Rutgers CS is a helpful community of students by the peer mentoring program. Through this, upperclassmen are put in charge of running small recitations for CS 111, our Intro to CS course at Rutgers. In addition to helping take some of the load off department TAs and establishing a precedent of helpfulness, the peer leader program has served as a great way for upperclassmen to bring underclassmen into the CS community without them having to attend events.

Over the past three years, the spirit of that program has been taken up and broadened by a couple of on campus organizations dedicated to helping students build their programming skills outside the classroom. One such organization, RUMAD has done this by helping students build mobile applications, a process which includes hands-on workshops and presentations about the latest technology. Another organization called USACS has been offering mentoring, tutoring sessions, and a weekly Hacker Hour series to teach students about topics they wouldn’t learn in class. At the same time, RU Tech Meetup and the Rutgers Hackathon Club have also sprung up as avenues for students to get together and show off what they built, thus furthering the idea that students can, and should, get together to build projects on their own.

Taken together, these efforts haven’t produced a development utopia at Rutgers, but they have produced a community of students who are eager to grow their skills and help others do the same.

What any university can do: Create mentorship programs to encourage young developers and help them feel comfortable. Also, create opportunities where people can be recognized for their hard work.

Leaders stepped up and built organizations which brought people together

One of the biggest problems that faced the Rutgers technology community when I joined was that it lacked leaders who took the initiative in building it. All that has changed over the last 3 years as a handful of leaders have emerged to drive the community to its current state.

The proto-leaders in this sense were V and Sameen, two of the big architects behind HackRU, but they aren’t the only ones. Since HackRU 1, many leaders have stepped up and left a legacy of building community at Rutgers. On the USACS side, after V and Sameen stepped down, Devon served as president and brought his own brand of creativity to the table, and now Billy Lynch is doing the same with his presidency at USACS. At the same time, leadership has expanded past USACS in the form of Swift, who has set the gold standard helping Rutgers students even after graduation, and the RUMAD team: Nis, Dave, and co., all of whom have taken RUMAD from nothing to a 200+ person club in just two years. Without the contributions of these and many other leaders, it is tough to say what the Rutgers community would look like today. However, what’s for sure is that because of these students’ hard-work in building events and organizations, Rutgers technologists have been able to come together in a way that was unheard of 3 years ago.

What university can do: If you feel like your school needs to have a larger community, start planning events you’d want to attend and then market the hell out of them. Communities don’t just magically appear from thin air, it takes people to build them.

Looking back at the past three years, it’s pretty amazing to see what how much the CS culture at Rutgers has grown. While we haven’t built a development paradise, we have taken a community of 10 students and transformed into a group of 350+ developers who are energized about building new projects. Sadly my time as a Rutgers CS undergrad is coming to an end, so I won’t be able to shape the future of the undergrad community anymore. Nonetheless, I’ll be back as an alumnus over the coming years, and I’m excited to see how future students find ways to grow the Rutgers developer community even further.

(A big thank you also goes to Gerard and V for their help in editing these thoughts into a coherent piece)

Written by

Soon to be a proud @RutgersU grad and @Yelp engineer. I think in 140 characters on @maltzj

 

Why I Ran a TEDx Event


In January 2012, I transferred to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

At my former university, I was part of a student organization called MPowered Entrepreneurship. It was filled with driven students that were changing the University of Michigan, their peers, and the world for the better. Maybe it was my background at Michigan, the dreaded winter weather, or really just the way things were, but I noticed a lack of drive and energy on the Illinois campus. Don’t get me wrong about this—there are incredible things happening here every single second. The Technology Entrepreneur Center and other parts of the university are spearheading Illinois’ startup and entrepreneurial community. There are students here that are creating new technologies, starting companies, and are working tirelessly to make a difference in their communities and the world.

But when I stepped on this campus, that wasn’t evident. I had to seek it out. There were so many amazing people and things here, but the broader student body didn’t reflect them. Motivation and drive seemed to be defined by going to class, memorizing, regurgitating, having the goal of getting a stable job, and that was it. Passion seemed to be an afterthought, if it wasn’t lost altogether.

I was at one of the top universities in the entire world. The students here are supposed to be the leaders that shape our future. This campus had so much potential. All it needed was a spark, and TED and TEDx are among the most effective flames I know.

So I applied for a license from TED, formed a small team of some of the most amazing people I’ve met, and together we founded TEDxUIUC as a student-run initiative. I don’t know of a more powerful driver of change on a college campus than students creating something to motivate and inspire their peers. TEDxUIUC 2013: Initiate. Innovate. Inspire. ignited the University of Illinois with red and black and set the groundwork for what we wanted this campus to become. This year, an equally incredible team is continuing the initiative with TEDxUIUC 2014: In Pursuit.

But back to the question of why I decided to run TEDxUIUC.

I was lucky enough to meet the right people early on in my college career and learned to chase my dreams and do what I was passionate about. I transferred schools, switched my major, and still never stopped pursuing what I wanted when I realized even all of this wasn’t enough. Not everyone learns to do that, because our educational system isn’t designed for it (see Sir Ken Robinson: Bring on the learning revolution!).

I saw the potential for change, the need for someone to act on that, and decided to go for it. And I saw that change happen—even in these small, initial baby steps of ours, I saw it. I knew my two years here and running TEDxUIUC during them wasn’t going to completely revolutionize this campus. But it was a start. And together with all the other remarkable things that are pushing this university’s system and students towards more, in years to come this start could just be enough.

This campus isn’t the only place in this world that needs a start towards betterment. There is potential for growth in infinite communities, and all it takes is someone to act on that. It’s why I run TEDxUIUC. And it is exactly why I encourage every single person reading this to look around yourself, see the potential for betterment, and start.

Written by

“If you want to change the world, pick up your pen and write.” -Martin Luther