What Is Our Generation's Mission Statement?

On January 14, 2017, thirteen Phillips Academy Andover students gave TEDx talks that centered on the theme: “What is our generation’s mission statement?” The conference was “the culmination of over a year of work, blood, sweat, and tears,” said Tanvi Kanchinadam ‘19, whose original idea to host the conference on campus sparked “inspiration that was infectious” among student colleagues. She worked with a student committee and the Tang Institute to make it happen. View student videos below and read about the event in the Blog.

In this TEDx Talk, Amiri Tulloch ’18 explores how black activism has thrived on the social media platform Twitter. Examining the topic from a local to international lens, Tulloch details three factors of black activism’s success on Twitter: its protest power, educational opportunities, and global influence.

What’s so bad about wanting to do it all? In her talk, Leeza Petrov ’18 uses personal anecdotes on ambition and personal achievement to describe her early life. She goes on to discuss how ambition and success are not always mutually exclusive, and deconstructs the culture of overachievement which manifests as a toxic ideology in our world.

Andie Pinga ’19 has seen different forms of malnutrition manifest itself in Vietnam, the Philippines, and the United States. As hunger reaches a critical stage in the world today, it is important to recognize the importance of feeding the mind as well as feeding the belly. To “solve hunger better,” our generation must invest in the future by feeding our children quality diets with more nutritious foods.

When we’re thinking about the future, maybe the first course of action is to ask the past. Grace Ann Limoncelli ’18 speaks about the importance of connection to our friends and relatives in nursing homes, as well as the ways we can act together to build a more empathetic world.

Opportunities are often tough to come across. In “The Frog in the Well,” Kevin Sun ’18 shares his own journey out of the well by exploring his passion for technology. He discusses how hackathons are “door-openers” and how starting his own hackathon solidified this passion.

Makenna Marshall ’18 reflects on gentrification from a perspective of privilege and advocates for a change in how those with privilege reflect on their impact on the world.

Vish Dhar ’19 talks about how young people are the solution to the climate change crisis and how their influence is impactful. The speech is centered around the the fact that man-made climate change can no longer be debated because, without cutbacks in emissions, the world is quickly going to reach the point of no return.

Is innovation always the best way forward? Is newness something to be valued in and of itself? In her talk, Claudia Meng ’18 argues it is now time to rethink the way we evaluate change, and start cultivating innovation worth pursuing.

Asian Americans are often stereotyped as the ‘model minority’ and are seen as perfect students that are good at math, piano, and violin, for example. Although these are positive stereotypes, Olivia Lai ’20 explores the negative consequences of these expectations and what we can do to alleviate pressures on Asian-American students.

AI is already a widely acclaimed technology with demonstrated potential in a variety of fields: driverless cars in transportation, surveillance in military applications, and chatbots and digital secretaries in social relations, to name a few. In these applications, AI both promotes efficiencies and has disadvantages. In his talk, Gherardo Morono ’17 will consider the benefits and drawbacks of AI, as well as the impact laws and ethics will have on the future development of AI.

What do the futures of commerce and technology look like and how will we need to adapt to them? In his talk, Nick Toldalagi discusses the emerging industrial revolution, the idea of a “frictionless” economy, and the consequences of both for the global labor force.