Your Name and Title: Katherine Ganim, Co-Director

School or Organization Name: KIDmob, the mobile, kid-integrated design firm

Co-Presenter Name(s): Tyler Pew, Co-Director, and Patima Pataramekin, Curriculum Guru

Area of the World from Which You Will Present: The United States - San Francisco, CA 

Language in Which You Will Present: English

Target Audience(s): Educators, Administrators, Innovators

Short Session Description (one line): Three diverse communities. Twenty-four empathetic students. One shared goal: to change their world.

Full Session Description (as long as you would like): 

Worldwide, creative intelligence and adaptability are stifled by outdated educational models. The Youth Design Summit, which took place April 10-15, 2014, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, set out to build 21st century skills along with cross-cultural empathy and understanding. We are:

  • Creating Global citizens: The Youth Design Summit brought together 3 disparate student groups, many of whom have had minimal exposure to what exists "beyond the mountains." 
  • Developing creative changemakers: The students built on their experience in past KIDmob workshops to critically observe, reimagine, and reinvent their world. 
  • Building 21st Century leaders: These students not only created direct solutions: they developed the interpersonal, creative, and leadership skills needed for future success. 
  • Designing relevant local solutions: Each student group presented a local community challenge or opportunity to the other two groups. Over the course of the workshop, mixed student groups co-created solutions for each community.

With one Youth Design Summit (YDS) under our belts, we've established proof of concept as a model to rethink and transform education. This presentation will discuss the Youth Design Summit experience and outcomes, and will consider its implications and replicability moving forward. 

The Youth Design Summit Details:

We had twenty-four students - eight from each community - for this workshop. KIDmob worked with all twenty-four of these students prior to the YDS, to lay a common foundation for this workshop. The students are 10th to 12th graders in high school. We had six facilitators - a mix of Haitian and American designers - for a 4:1 student facilitator ratio. Our facilitators (or, the "mob" as we like to call them) are students or professionals in design, architecture, industrial design, construction, engineering, and other design and engineering fields. Although we has 3 translators to help out as needed, we designed this workshop to maximize direct student interaction and minimize reliance on translators. (It's a better human connection that way!)

KIDmob's first Youth Design Summit brought together three groups of students that would have otherwise never met: students from rural Northern California and two Haitian groups from vastly different socio-economic strata. Each group brought a community challenge to present to the other two student groups. Over the course of the week, the students explored, imagined, and prototyped their way to solutions for each community.

As with anyone, the students' backgrounds dictate their race, class, language, and exposure. These differences are obvious. Having had the opportunity to work with each of the three student groups, we've seen the innate qualities that they have, regardless of background: creativity, curiosity, and coming up with ideas - these are areas where any of these kids can, and did, excel.


Websites / URLs Associated with Your Session:

Our successful Kickstarter campaign that made the trip possible

KIDmob's blog post reflecting on YDS

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Here are the slides we presented! Thanks to everyone who attended, and please contact us if you have any questions or would like additional info!

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