Group 10 Blog – Week 1

This week was our first week of camp, and group 10, The Silly Seahorses, has already done so many activities! First things first: swimming! The Silly Seahorses swim twice every day; all the campers are having a great time cooling off in the water. We know many of them are looking forward to being better swimmers by the end of the summer. We also had Zumba, and the group got to work off some of their energy by doing some cool dance-fitness. After Zumba, we had Gardening, where we got to know the Yomi Garden and see some different plants. We also had Cooking, which many of the campers said was their favorite part of the day! They made yummy apple “nachos” with fun toppings.

Every morning we start with fun station! For now, that means we’re all getting to know each other by doing some ice breakers. We also played some field games, and then had Music with Nelson, where everyone got to play different instruments! We got to try arts and crafts, where all the campers got to draw self-portraits to bring home with them; they had tons of fun using oil pastels and their imaginations.  We ended the week with Baseball, Filmmaking, and the celebration of Shabbat where everyone gets their share of Challah and grape juice!  The cherry on the top of this week was winning group of the week!  We’re so excited!  We had so much fun this week and we’re really looking forward to the next one!

Group 9 Blog – Week 1

Group 9’s first week at Yomi went swimmingly! The Swimming Sea Dragons dove into the first day of camp with gusto! We started off our Wednesday by turning our name/fun fact introductions into a game, where our counselors guessed each camper’s names and favorite color. Everyone was super excited about our game and it was such a fun way to get to know each other. Then our group went to the very first swim of this summer!  We all spent our pool time relaxing and having a great time in the water. In our Arts and Crafts period, our campers made self portraits so good, it was like looking into a mirror! We also had a great time in Soccer and Zumba where everyone worked up a sweat. On Thursday, we all went to film-making, where everyone got to be directors and make a special group 9 video! We then had some fun at the Jewish Culture station where we learned more about Shabbat!  On Friday, we got to celebrate Shabbat with all of Unit 1 and one of our very own counselors won counselor of the week!  We’re looking forward to next week! Have a wonderful 4th of July!

Group 8 Blog – Week 1

The Super Starfish’s first week at camp went swimmingly! On the first day of camp, we played ice-breakers to get to know each other, and made super fashionable baskets out of clay. We also explored the wonderful garden containing fresh veggies and mint leaves! The weather may have been questionable, but as one of the group’s favorite cheers goes, we B-E-A-T beat em! beat em! The group was all smiles in the pool, playing with each other and the counselors. We let our creativity shine through as we drew what we’d like to find underground, tried tasty apple nachos in cooking, and played relay games in pop-fit kids on Thursday! We also had so much fun dancing at Shabbat, and showing off our awesome skills at soccer! We all left camp highly anticipating another fun week!

Group 7 Blog – Week 1

For the first week of camp, group 7 (A.K.A The Golden Goldfish) got to know each other with a name game. Each camper said their name and a few things about themselves. The Golden Goldfish also played a game of soccer with everyone split up into three teams! Next, The Golden Goldfish also made some amazing nature collages in arts and crafts. Group 7 had fun making fourth of July themed bracelets and necklaces in jewelry making and hit many home-runs in baseball! We then had fun bouncing on the trampoline and balancing on the balance beam during gymnastics. The Golden Goldfish also learned about calming their mind and body in yoga. On Friday, The Golden Goldfish danced and celebrated Shabbat together with all of Unit 1! We can’t wait for next week and the new exciting activities to come! Have a good weekend!

Group 6 Blog – Week 1

What a wonderful first few days of camp the Jolly Jellyfish had! On Wednesday, we played soccer with our new camp friends and even got to score against the counselors!  During gymnastics we jumped on a trampoline and in yoga, we did silly poses with our partners. On Thursday, we made self portraits and added something unique to them. Some of us added our parents, friends, and even pets in our portraits! Next, we took our baseball skills to the field and played a great game. Then we left our bats and gloves behind and started to learn about the different leaves and trees on our very own camp grounds! We even saw mushrooms growing right near our shelter! On Friday, we got to visit the garden and dance will all of Unit 1 at Shabbat.  Above all, we can all agree that swimming is the best part of the day. From racing from one end of the pool to the other, going underwater and practicing our swim skills with the life guards, it’s always a fun time! We can’t wait for more fun activities and cheers for next week.

Group 5 Blog – Week 1B

What a wonderful second week of camp it has been at Camp Yomi, especially for Group 5! The Popping Puffer Fish started off the week right by making swans that were made out of clay, and by having an extra free swim, making it two for the day. Instructional swim started on Tuesday. Tuesday was a great day at Camp Yomi for group 5 even though it rained! The group did enjoy a great time doing gymnastics. On Wednesday, the 4th of July there was no camp as everyone was out and celebrating the holiday. Group 5 hopes everyone had a well spent day off and enjoyed time with their families!  Thursday was an incredible day as it marked our first late night as a group and as a unit. With three swim periods, a scavenger hunt, making oceans, and having a picnic on the field, we, as the Popping Puffer Fish, would say we had a terrific second week here at Camp Yomi. On Friday we enjoyed Shabbat as a whole unit and sang songs to celebrate the holiday. Every camper in group 5 loved basketball, and it was even recognized as one of the best sports that every camper in the group has played.  We hope all our group 5 families have a great weekend and we’re really looking forward to next week!


Hey All You Yomi Fans!

The swim team is so excited to dive into summer, and into the pool! We’ve had so much fun at the pool already; we can tell it’s going to be a super sunny and sensational summer at Camp!

Each day, campers have a free and instructional swim period. Campers receive swim instruction from American Red Cross Certified lifeguards and instructors. After each camper is evaluated on their swim skills, they are placed into their appropriate swim groups with respective bracelet color.

The swim levels are:

Blue: Wader, Splasher, Guppy

Orange: Tadpole, Minnow, Goldfish

Red: Catfish, Dolphin, Marlin, Barracuda, Shark, Killer Whale

If you have any questions, feel free to email me Nina, Swim Director, at or leave a voicemail at 212.415.5643 ext 3.

Blog: Group 4 Week 1

Group 4 was super excited to start off our rockin’ summer with some getting to know you games on the Unit K field! Once we all got to meet our new summer friends, the Rockin’ Raindrops couldn’t wait to get in the pool! We practically swam like fishes even when it started to drizzle. After a delicious lunch, we danced like crazy at Zumba–we had so much fun we didn’t even break a sweat! Our next activity was improv, and it was super silly. We played a game called “Screenshot” and pretended to be things we find in pictures, like tall trees and sand at the beach! The next day we started making shooting stars to decorate the shelter. We absolutely loved Jamming at Music with Nelson, we sang so loud that the entire camp could hear us! We had so much fun at Shabbat, singing and dancing along to the Shabbatones and enjoying this special time with our counselors and new friends.

Blog: Group 3 Week 1

And so Yomi begins! Group 3, The Astro Aliens, soared into the week with some getting to know you games like “Where the Wind Blows”. They quickly realized how much they have in common with their summer friends! The campers were excited to then get in the pool and splash along with their counselors and new friends. Later in the day, the campers brought out their giggles at Improv Acting when they made silly animal noises. Group 3 showed off their green thumbs in gardening and then did some “movie magic” with the greenscreen in filmmaking! On Thursday we started the day with ceramics where the campers sculpted some beautiful pinch pots that they can take home in the next few weeks! We then swung into summer fun during baseball at the Mets field. After running around the bases like crazy, we had a blast making music and preparing for Shabbat at Jewish Culture. On Friday, we started off with imagination playground, where we got to play with huge blue foam blocks. The Campers went wild with their imaginations, building towers, slides, and whatever else they could think of. During Shabbat, we listened and sang along to some fun songs and danced with our counselors and friends. Everyone enjoyed the challah and grape juice snack! On this hot Friday, we enjoyed swiming in the nice cool pool! Zumba and soccer were great afternoon activities to cap off a great first week to what will be an amazing summer.

Blog: Group 2 Week 1

Group 2, The Shining Stars, had an amazing first week of camp! The rain could not stop us from having a blast! We played lots of getting to know you games and a fun game of “Fishy Fishy Cross My Ocean”. At soccer we were all World Cup Champions, even beating our counselors in a game! On Thursday we played “What Time Is It Mr. Fox?” in the pool and had so much fun keeping cool! During jewelry making, we made 4th of July themed jewelry, and then cheered lots of our favorite new songs on our way to the next activity! Then, we got our best smiles on as we went to photography and took some wonderful pictures of the garden! On Friday, The Shining Stars celebrated Shabbat for the very first time at camp! We had a wonderful time singing songs and dancing with our counselors. Group 2 cannot wait to find out what new adventures we are going to have next week.

Blog: Group 1 Week 1

Group 1, the Happy Hot Air Balloons, had an amazing first week of camp! ON Wednesday, the group played getting to know you games during fun station! WE had so much fun learning about all of our new friends. Next, we had soccer where we played a silly “Pacman” game with the goals and played on the blue, rainbow, and red teams. The Happy Hot Air Balloons were good sports and showed off their awesome athletic skills. Later we had ceramics where we created and decorated beautiful pinch pots. On Thursday, we had an amazing time playing “Steal the Ball” because we got to run around on the field and see who is fastest! After lunch, we zoomed through the sky on the mini zip where we cheered our new friends on as they soared through the air. At Jewelry Making we all had so much fun making July 4th themed bracelets. On Friday, group 1 started off the day by learning some new Shabbat songs and snacking on grape juice and challah. On this hot Friday, we cooled off at the pool and then had a blast jumping on the trampoline at gymnastics! We can’t wait for all the fun to come next week!

Bari-Tov Welcome from director

We have had another fun filled week at Bari Tov! On top of all of our fun weekly activities, some highlights from this past week include dressing up as Wizards and creating hats and slime; taking on the “big” zipline (!); enjoying an ice cream social with the Ilanot campers; and a field trip to the Tomahawk Lake Waterpark! At the waterpark, ALL of the Bari Tov campers were brave and went down the waterslides! (Longest waterslides in New Jersey!) Go Bari Tov!

Welcome to 7 Days of Genius 2017 – Create for Good

Welcome to 7 Days of Genius 2017! Once again, we are thrilled to invite people from around the world to collaborate on a digital festival of new ideas. 7 Days of Genius is an opportunity for anyone anywhere to reflect on — and create! — genius solutions to challenges we face in our immediate communities and on a global scale. This year, we will be joined by designers and students, budding artists and entrepreneurs – all engaged in exploring, debating and cultivating new ideas that will advance social good.

Check out our 7 challenges and download our toolkit for specifics on how you can get involved.

And, stayed tuned to this blog for updates! We will feature stories, pictures and video from 92Y and contributors from Nepal to Guatemala, India to South Africa, Los Angeles to NYC…and more.

In the meantime, read more about the amazing organizations, communities and individuals that made 7 Days of Genius 2016 an amazing success!

7 Days of Genius in Delhi, India

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92Y partnered with UN Women & UN Inter-Agency Network on Youth Development focusing on defining and developing youth-led genius solutions for gender equality. From New York to New Delhi, and Anchorage to Guatemala City — in dozens of events around the world and through online content — 92Y’s “7 Days of Genius” ignited a global conversation to explore the power of genius to make a positive impact on the world.

On 8th March, 2016 (International Women’s Day) an event was organized by the Youth Representative to UN & Global Youth Advocate, Saket Mani (under the guidance of Senior Advisor to UN Assistant Secretary General & Deputy Executive Director of UN-Women) in Delhi Technology University from 4pm to 7 pm. The purpose was to allow students and young people to present their Genius Idea with a focus on providing solutions for achieving Planet 50-50. Each of the participants was to answer the following questions:

  • What is a genius idea, according to you?
  • What is your genius idea to achieving gender equality – planet 50 – 50 by 2030?
  • Why should we be talking about Gender Equality?

It is rightly said that one can find the best solutions and most unique of perspectives from amongst the young people themselves. Even though most of the students were attending a discussion on gender equality for the first time, they came up with some amazing solutions. A student from the rural area of Haryana surprised everyone by talking about CEDAW and the correlation of Gender inequality with violence in India. I was quite happy to engage with him and soon everyone joined in.

“Because a big part of the inequality is that women aren’t taken as seriously as men, we can and should push to make their voices heard. We need to remind ourselves that stereotypes aren’t always true. Make the same assumption about her ability that you’d make for a man:  Competent until proven otherwise, rather than insisting she prove she knows what she’s doing” said Sadiq Hasan, one of the male students.

“Gender equality is not just improving the 933:1000 sex ratios. It is the creation of a society where everyone has fair and equal chances of survival and proving their potential” said Deepanshu Rajoria, another male participant.

“I don’t expect that till 2030, gender equality can be achieved specially in India. A fact said that it took 20 years for the world to realize that this issue needs to be resolved, so in the upcoming 14 years how can this be settled fairly! But I really hope that our country altogether moves up and reduces the inequality if not completely” , said another female participant.

The discussion evolved from addressing the gender gap to more awareness of their right. It involved heavy discussion around feminism and why some women make it all about male bashing. It also involved what can be done to prevent female foeticide, child marriage and holding the government or local legislation accountable. Some of them were using more digital approaches as a part of their solutions such as HeForShe, opening virtual discussion forums, having more weeks such as ‘7 days of Genius’ every month dedicated to gender equality.

The participants not only contributed to the pool of ideas but also learnt many more themselves along the way. They weren’t just informed, rather their perspective and understanding evolved as the discussion progressed. Changing attitude of even one individual is the starting of our journey.

Some of the Genius Solutions included:

  • Parents are our first teachers. So training parents is extremely crucial to shape up the environment of the house. It will also prevent the children from getting exposed to domestic violence.
  • Today media is one of the biggest sources that shape our knowledge and also the biggest channel of communication. Bollywood has a huge influence on both educated & uneducated masses. Doing female centric movies more often or showcasing strong female characters that breaks stereotypes or orthodox mindset has a huge impact. Making more movies like He Named Me Malala, Neerja etc would surely change the attitudes of people. Children generally grow up watching cartoons. These cartoons have a major impact in their lives and that’s how they shape their attitudes.
  • Having more female role models and making people aware about them can be one effective tool.
  • It’s also important not to “go along to get along” when people (especially people in authority) joke about their “stupid” wives, how women love to shop, and so forth. And in some ways, remind yourself that stereotypes aren’t always true.  Stifle your surprise when you meet a woman who tells you that she’s software engineer, civil engineer, welder, athlete, doctor, or anything else, rather than treating her like some kind of novelty.
  • Gender equality can be promoted by doing social media campaign, street plays etc.
  • Women must realize their potential to fight back and for this they need to have the knowledge of self-defense, which can be successfully achieved at school levels by introducing ‘Self Defense Classes’ as a mandatory subject for girls.

The discussion was so intense that we had a boy from Nepal who passionately compared gender gap in Nepal and India. None of these were very technical but more on their everyday observances. The enthusiasm was palpable, despite being informed that they were 1hr 45 mins ahead of closure, the students were so engrossed that they weren’t willing to stop the discussion. The engagement ensured that all of participants took much more with them than what they had come to offer.

Additionally a day before Saket Mani had helped UN Women organize a rally to celebrate Planet 50 50. Attended by over 100 participants, with amazing energy even at 7am despite the rain! The participants also went around asking random people on the street about genius solution for gender equality.

92Y in Delhi (6)

92Y in Delhi (8)

Pitch Night on Genius ideas for Mobility in Guatemala City

In Guatemala, Grafiaetc and Movillidad hosted a pitch night around the topic of genius ideas in mobility. Groups delivered their business models and the mentors selected the most interesting project. The winners won a prize to implement their project in an incubator.

The event was available to watch on live stream, and groups in El Salvador and Honduras came together in order to watch what was happening in Guatemala City.

They put together a storify to tell the story of their event. Check it out here!



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On March 11th, GMin together with 92nd St Y partnered to host an an Event on Genius: Connection & Mastery. Youths that we have worked with in the past along with other aspiring youth leaders were selected to be part of the event which took part in the Hall in All Saints.

We had around 20 youth show up for the event and we had an early ice breaker game for youth’s to learn each other’s name using an adjective that matches that has the same first letter as their name i.e M​a​rvelous M​​ichelle!

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After the Ice Breaker session, Richy and Michelle talked about GMin’s work in empowering youth to become more effective problem solvers in their communities. Richy then went to talk about the partnership with 92nd St Y and why it is good to acknowledge and celebrate and reflect back on the little and big invention breakthroughs that have happened.

The theme for the event was Connection & Mastery and we discussed how past and present geniuses show a deep connection and bond to what they do and in turn become masters in their field and push the boundaries to become geniuses.

We looked at examples from people like Charles Darwin, Mozart, and discussed their affiliation to their fields and also we looked at what is considered Genius in our present time and the youth noted that a lot of breakthroughs were happening in the hardware and software tech and that’s where they saw most geniuses coming from.

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We also watched the interview Are Geniuses Born or Made? with Dr. Joy Hirsch and had a discussion based on the question. A majority of the youth shared how their thoughts on the subject and majority came with the insight that it does take a lot of perseverance and hard work to create the much needed impact to be recognized as a genius

We also had a pleasure of having some of the alumni youths from our Innovation Challenge program join us and present ways in which they have tapped into their creativity to solve some of the pressing issues they see in their respective communities. The youths shared about challenges they see in energy and transport and offered some of the solutions they are  prototyping to help solve the challenges. We had a chance to hear from Leroy who is working on a Human Waste Bio­Digester project at his school to tackle the waste problem and provide clean energy for his school.

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Joe presenting his wireless speed tracker to help road users be more alert on the road.

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A Special Open House of House of Genius

As part of 7 Days of Genius, Impact Hub NYC partnered with House of Genius, an internationally recognized event series in over 30 cities. Each House of Genius works with local businesses and organizations to solve problems or make the most of opportunities. How?

Through a moderated format based on anonymous collaboration, House of Genius guests come up with creative solutions and strategies while building relationships with others.

During this session at Impact Hub NYC on Saturday, March 5, 2016, audience members witnessed the process and were invited to participate through written submissions.

Learn more about House of Genius & Impact Hub NYC here.

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Creating a Company Culture That Allows Genius to Emerge at Startup Hall in Seattle, Washington

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Startup Hall‘s Start Something Series partnered with 92Y 7 Days of Genius to invite Koru CEO and co-founder Kristen Hamilton to discuss her own unique startup journey under the theme “Creating a company culture that allows genius to emerge.”

Vikram Jandhyala, the University of Washington’s Vice Provost of Innovation, moderated the event and guided Kristen’s answers with an engaging and relevant line of questioning. Appetizers and drinks were provided.

Couldn’t make it to the event? You can watch it here!

Preparing the Children at Spiny Babbler for a 7 Days of Genius Event in Lalitpur, Nepal

by Anuttama Sharma.


On Tuesday, 8 March, 2016, I was called “Teacher” for the first time ever when the students of Spiny Babbler asking me my name, addressed me so. I had gone to Spiny Babbler in order to assist and guide the students prepare presentations for the Genius Event. Only a little way into each of their presentations, I could see that they were all very talented. Content of most of their presentations exceeded the level of knowledge and ability a student their age would normally be expected to have, by quite a margin. Abiksha at 8 years, knew of all the chemical elements in the periodic table, and each of their symbols and atomic numbers. In addition, she could play 11 different tunes in the flute continuously for about 30 minutes.

Also, the students were very attentive to the feedback I gave and sincere in working them into their presentations. Nitya and Pukar, who were both very good in answering mental mathematics questions, usually took time in forming questions on the spot (which was rather strange as it was not the answers that they had difficulty with). After providing them a few suggestions, they took on to themselves to create an underlying structure to their questions in a manner that the they were fresh but easier to ask. If they went blank at any point, they would still have another basis of forming the required questions in time.

Another thing that was very impressive and pleasantly surprising was that when the students who finished preparing as per the feedback, or had nothing else to do, didn’t just run along and play unlike a few other children I have seen. In fact one of the students, Sanjeev, who did not have any task at hand and was actually ill at the time, innocently came up to me and asked, “Teacher, what should I do?”, when he saw me assign other students some additional tasks.

In the few hours that I spent at Spiny Babbler, I could see that each of the children had their own distinct personality: Kusuma was a bit shy, Shaswat more confident, they were all in all intelligent, helpful, sincere, hardworking, and an extremely friendly bunch. And the time I spent with them, therefore, was a refreshing, new and a positively unexpected experience.


Click here to learn more about Spiny Babbler.

Speaking of Numbers – A 7 Days of Genius Event in Lalitpur, Nepal

by Nitya Poudel


Feeling nervous and excited I wake up at 6 o’clock. It’s beautiful sunny morning, 9 March 2016. I chose to wear a blue coat, blue pants and, again, a blue tie set against a blue shirt. Oh! I think I look pretty handsome in formal clothes, I should do this more often. I am dressed for school and eat breakfast. Now it’s time to rush to school.

Thank God I am on time. 8 o’clock. “Goodbye Baba, see you at the program”.

I enter the gate. “Good morning, Pallav sir”. Pallav sir’s first words to me, “You look handsome.” I feel so happy. But I would look better if I take off the tie, I think.

I climb upstairs to look for my friend and mathematics presentation partner Pukar. We discuss our presentation. I see students from other schools arriving. It’s 10:30 and the program is about to start in a half hour. I am getting nervous. I go downstairs and see that everyone has settled down on chairs. As if on air, I am going upstage, and many people are watching me.

I shiver as I see my parents in the audience. I start blowing my flute along with my friends, Utkrishta, Abiksha and Shaswat. I think I and my friends blew the flute beautifully and I hear audience clapping. They encourage us. Soon everyone is standing as Abiksha plays the National Anthem and I am back in the audience.

I hear my name called up again, I try to calm myself down as I climb up to the stage. I am scared. Will I be able to perform in front of so many people? I gather courage and start my presentation on mathematics. I am telling the listeners about the history of mathematics. I am surprised that I am not feeling nervous any more and now feel that I can finish my presentation calmly. I am glad the audience is having a good time, I feel happy my presentation is going well and no one will throw vegetables or shoes at me. Time for addition. I and Pukar are asking each other random questions on addition. Then come subtraction, multiplication, algebraic expressions.

The presentation goes well. I feel a little sad when I have to step down. I feel that I could have kept the audience entertained with mathematics quite a while longer! Thanks Pukar, my father and mother, and my teachers for making this happen. Now it is time for me to listen to others.


Click here to learn more about Spiny Babbler.

ECOWEEK & 7 Days of Genius in Sarajevo, Bosnia, & Herzegovina

by Elias Messinas.

ECOWEEK’s Sarajevo, Bosnia, & Herzegovina event took place at NETWORKS hub in downtown Sarajevo on Friday March 11th and was co-organized with NGO LIFT. The event was moderated by the LIFT team headed by Nedim Mutevelic. Click here to learn more about the event.

Following a short introduction on ECOWEEK by ECOWEEK founding chairman Elias Messinas over Skype, 4 established projects were presented:

  • ‘Spatial Initiatives in Maria’s Yard-Maria’s Bench’ by Nedim Mutevelic
  • ‘Channeling Ideas through Javorwood Festival’ by Mersel Bujak
  • ‘Sociocultural Awareness of Architecture Artistic Projects’ by Dr. Seneka Ibrisimbegovic
  • ‘Reimagining Coworking and Collaboration’ by Edin Mehic

The second part included the presentation of 4 younger projects:

  • ‘Setup Street Workout Visoko’ by Adina Sahinovic
  • ‘Dobre Kote – Urban Community Center’  by Ifran Salihagic
  • ‘M1-Mobile Museum’ by Tea Gastan
  • ‘ARCIS – Automatic Remote Irrigation System’ by Armin Roksa

You can learn more about the speakers here.

The project ARCIS – Automatic Remote Irrigation System by Armin Roksa was voted by the participants as the genius idea of the event. Check out the project:

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By Elias Messinas.

ECOWEEK’s Thessaloniki event took place at TECHNOPOLIS Hub in Pylea Thessaloniki, on Monday March 7th. The event was co- organized with Nanotypos, and in cooperation with AKTO School of Arts and Design and the ECOWEEK GREENHOUSE. The event was moderated by ECOWEEK Associate Despoina Kouinoglou and was livestreamed. Check out the event program here:

Following a short introduction on ECOWEEK, 5 experts shared their innovative projects:

  • EU funding opportunities’ by Giannis Tsitsopoulos
  • Innovative projects at the International University’ by Ioanna Simeonidou
  • Smart Eco- solutions for innovative applications’ by Electra Papadopoulo
  • Innovative uses of polymer materials’ by Prof. Dimitrios Bikiaris
  • Dangerous digital habits’ by Dr. Alexis Papadimitriou

Later in the day, 4 young projects were presented:

  • Sustainable Solution for Floods’ by Astrit Rraci, Kosovo
  • SenseLAB’ touching upon issues of handicap understanding of space by Ena Hadzic and Maja Ibrahimpasic, Bosnia & Herzegovina
  • Homelessness: a design challenge’ by Christina Petsiou and ECOWEEK workshop team W7
  • Garden of Fairy Tales’ on open public space (Lina Kapeta).

Learn more about the speakers here.

The project of Astrit Rraci from Kosovo, offering a sustainable solution for floods using new materials and exploiting the water flow to recycle water and produce energy, was voted by the participants as the genius idea of the event. Check out the project here!

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ECOWEEK & 7 Days of Genius in Bucharest, Romania

ECOWEEK’s Seven Days of Genius event in Bucharest, co-organized with NGO University, took place at Seneca Anticafe downtown Bucharest on March 10th. The event was moderated by ECOWEEK Associate Radu Negulescu. You can learn more about the event program here.

Following a short introduction on ECOWEEK, the event included a series of presentations by young entrepreneurs. Here are some of the projects that were presented:

  •  ‘Parking People’ by Liviu Chelcea and Ioana Iancu
  • ‘Bucharest Green Lakes’ by Ioana Tudora
  • ‘Clay Houses’ by Catalin Berescu
  • ‘Case VII’ by Natalia Negru
  • ‘Regaining Green Spaces in your Neighborhood’ by Laura Negulescu
  • ‘Creative Campus’ by Alexandru Vasiliu and Andrei Mihail

Click here to learn more about the speakers and their work!

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ECOWEEK & 7 Days of Genius in Jerusalem, Israel

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ECOWEEK’s Jerusalem event took place at the American Center in Jerusalem on Tuesday, March 8th and was co-organized with the American Embassy, JEST Hub and the ECOWEEK GREENHOUSE. The event took place on International Womens Day and was dedicated to women designers and social entrepreneurs. The event was moderated by ECOWEEK Founding Chairman Elias Messinas.

You can learn more about the event here.

Following a short introduction on ECOWEEK, 5 experts shared innovative projects in design hubs in the periphery (Braha Kunda and Dana Schneorsan), public involvement in the re-design of the Wohl Rose garden in Jerusalem (Yael Hamermann Solar), corporate involvement in design for the community (Galia Hanoch Roe), and urban sustainability and the sharing economy (Valerie Brachya).

Next, 4 young projects were presented, including the ‘JEST entrepreneurship hub in East Jerusalem’ by Rana Qutteineh, ‘Edible gardens in Jerusalem’ by Eva Lerman Sela, ‘Pink Electronics’ an electronics company run by women by Abeer Al Natsheh, ‘the Design Terminal in Yeruham’ by Hadar Momarud, and the ‘Eastern Mediterranean Environmental Coalition’ by Sophie Schor.

You can learn more about the speakers here.

The project of JEST Hub in East Jerusalem, presented by Rana Qutteineh, was voted by the participants as the genius idea of the event. Check out the project:

ECOWEEK & 7 Days of Genius in ATHENS, GREECE

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by Elias Messinas

The ECOWEEK Greece event took place at AKTO College for Art and Design in Athens, Greece on Saturday 5 March from10:00-17:00 in cooperation with, Mamidakis Foundation, Design Lobby, ArchiSearch and the ECOWEEK GREENHOUSE. The event was moderated by ECOWEEK Associate Dimitris Nanos.

Click here to learn more about the program!

Following a short introduction on ECOWEEK, 3 established projects were presented: ‘Design Initiatives in Public Space’ (Thomas Doxiadis), ‘One Planet Living by Bioregional’ (Benjamin Gill), and ‘Materialize it!’ on nanotechnology (Konstantinos Giannakopoulos).

During the second part of the event, 4 young projects were presented, introducing a diversity of ideas including ‘Refugee Hospitality Center’ (Spiros Koulias), ‘Instant Urbanity’ an urban intervention in the center of Athens to enhance the sense of community (Evi Saflagioura), ‘Sustainable Solution for Floods’ (Astrit Rraci, Kosovo), ‘Prototype design for kindergarten’ (Argyris Amerikanos), and ‘Designing a Better World’ by GloVo – global volunteer platform – initiative (Nikos Foros).

Click here to learn about the speakers.

The winner:

The project of Astrit Rraci from Kosovo, which offers a sustainable solution for floods using new materials and exploiting the water flow to recycle water and produce energy, was voted by the participants as the genius idea of the event. Learn more about the project:

The Genius of Communication

by Marissa Shorenstein

As Mark Twain once said, “Thousands of geniuses live and die undiscovered, either by themselves or by others.” Although this literary genius made this observation over a century ago, this remains true, particularly in the many underserved communities across the United States.

Too often in poor neighborhoods and isolated areas, potential geniuses miss out on opportunities to achieve success in the future. In other words, the cards are stacked against them.

In today’s ever-changing tech landscape, every young person should be able to safely and efficiently take advantage of what technology has to offer: to communicate and use the power of connection for good. AT&T’s Aspire initiative is reaching out to underserved communities to ensure that students can connect with opportunities to better their future.

Technology creates more unique learning opportunities for more people and better prepares our youth for a more innovative workforce. It is changing the way we communicate, how we work and how we play.

And with the estimated 2.5 billion additional people that will be connected to the “knowledge economy” by 2030, it is our job to ensure that everyone can connect and communicate in this modern world.

Being connected can leverage opportunities for geniuses to shine. That is why it is incumbent upon us to identify and develop new partnerships to better meet and fill these gaps. Companies and nonprofits have the ability to cross collaborate, and develop programs that can unlock and provide more resources for underserved communities, thereby creating more opportunities for future generations.

As a company, we are committed to finding new ways to enhance technology and people’s general ability to communicate with one another. Whether it is bringing mobile-high speed Internet into the classroom or developing more mentorship programs in key communities, we want to make it easier for people to keep up.

The 92nd Street Y’s “7 Days of Genius” is a celebration of big thinkers, achievers, and the people of the world who have an unwavering determination to change it. Let’s help more geniuses get discovered, either by themselves or with the help of others.

Geniuses exist everywhere. It is incumbent upon us to make sure they can be discovered, and that everyone regardless of background has the opportunity to succeed.

Marissa Shorenstein is the president of AT&T in New York. AT&T is proud sponsor of 92nd Street Y’s “7 Days of Genius” Livestream and On-Demand.

Speech Spark Salon-Genius Week Time of Discovery in Liberia

By Gwendolyn Myers

The Speech Spark Salon-Genius Week Time of Discovery in Liberia (March 5-11, 2016) was hosted by Messengers of Peace-Liberia Inc (MOP) in close collaboration with the United Nations Inter-Agency Network on Youth Development’s Working Group on Youth and Gender Equality. The week included radio talk shows, outreach in schools, communities and an inter-high school debate between St. Peters Lutheran High School and Len Millar High School on the active involvement of youth in the quest for gender equality to achieve planet 50-50 by 2030.

The occasion was graced by Swedish Ambassador Lena Nordström, the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection’s Cllr. Deweh Gray (Vice-Chair of the Law Reform Commission), Lawrence Yealue from the West Africa Representative-Accountability Lab, and community development specialist Windor Dorkor Tarplah, as well as students from 15 high schools, press, etc.

The winning team from Len Millar High School emphasized the need to nurture young people in order to achieve the agenda 2030, planet 50-50.

The debate sparked a lot of genius ideas on how to empower and partner with young people in the quest for peace, security, and gender equality. A highlight of the debate was the need for more education on gender parity. Most of the participants had limited knowledge on issues of gender.

At Messengers of Peace-Liberia Inc (MOP), we have our work cut out for us, given the need to take gender, peace and security education to another level. This time around, primary school children! We need to start from the basics if planet 50-50 by 2030 is to be accomplished.

Here are some photos from the event:

Judges at work

Len Millar High School-The winning team

The winning team with guests at the event

Cross-section of studnets and youth at the program in Liberia

Gwendolyn Myers delivering official Genius Week Message in Liberia

7 Days of Genius Saturday Recap

A recap from yesterday! Check out some exciting events that happened around the world on March 12th:

  • In Anchorage, Alaska, the Anchorage Museum hosted a workshop on how to create your own hydroponic garden. Vertical Harvest Hydroponics joined Spark!Lab to talk about the genius of creative design through their innovative approach to making hydroponic gardening in Alaska more accessible.

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  • In Nairobi, Kenya, Global Minimum‘s Innovate Kenya held an innovation workshop for students at the Kivuli Center/Creatives Garage.

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  • In Nepal, the nonprofit Spiny Babbler continued to bring together governments, schools, pre-schools, and shelters to unearth young geniuses and showcase their ideas and their solutions for a nation that is suffering.
  • In Philadelphia, PA, the Free Library wrapped up its week of Genius programming with three events: a one-on-one writers’ coaching with Apiary Magazine, a workshop with the writers from Metropolarity about living under capitalism/militarism and using that as an inspiration for writing, and a reading and Q & A with metropolarity and friends.

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  • Continue to stay tuned to #thatsgenius to see the great tweets from our global partners. More Genius events will be happening around the world in the coming days.
  • Some photos from 7 Days of Genius in Liberia earlier this week:

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Sixth & I Synagogue in Washington DC Invited Three MacArthur Fellows to Speak About Their Pioneering Work as it Relates to Immigration

The historic synagogue Sixth & I, in partnership with 7 Days of Genius, and in collaboration with the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation in honor of the 35th anniversary of the MacArthur Fellows Program, invited three Fellows—Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Sarajevo-born author Aleksandar Hemon, and Assistant to the President and Director of the Domestic Policy Council Cecilia Muñoz, who is the daughter of immigrants from Bolivia—to talk about their pioneering work as it relates to immigration. The conversation was moderated by Cecilia Conrad, the Managing Director of the Fellows Program.

Click here to watch the event!

Adichie is the author of the novels Purple Hibiscus; Half of a Yellow Sun; Americanah, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction; the story collection The Thing Around Your Neck; and We Should All Be Feminists, a TED talk which was later published as a book. In her other TED talk, which has 9.7 million views, she warns of the danger of a “single story.”

Hemon is the author of The Lazarus Project, a finalist for the National Book Award, and the short story collections The Question of Bruno, Nowhere Man, and Love and Obstacles. He visited Chicago in 1992, intending to stay for a few of months. While there, Sarajevo came under siege, and he was unable to return home. He wrote his first story in English in 1995.

Muñoz is a longtime leader in immigration and civil rights policy who now oversees the domestic policy-making process in the White House. Before joining the Administration, she served as Senior Vice President for the Office of Research, Advocacy, and Legislation at the National Council of La Raza, the nation’s largest Latino civil rights organization.

Conrad had a distinguished career as both an economics professor and an administrator at Pomona College before joining the MacArthur Foundation. A winner of California’s Carnegie Professor of the Year award, Conrad’s academic research focuses on the effects of race and gender on economic status.

This program was made possible by the generosity of the Emanuel J. Friedman Philanthropies.

Below are some photos from the event. Photos taken by Bruce Guthrie.

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In Bangalore, India, over 300 Young Women & Men Joined Together to Appreciate Women and Learn About Gender Equality

by Sailesh Singhal

On the occasion of International Women’s Day and 7 Days of Genius Week, Student Council of St. Joseph’s College, in collaboration with Step It Up for Gender Equality, World We Want and 92Y, celebrated, honored and appreciated the women of our community.

On 9th March 2016 early in the morning at 7.30 am, more than 300 young women and men joined us for an outreach program. The outreach program was based on the theme of our celebrations – appreciate the women around us. We chose to divide ourselves into various groups, took on the jackets and brooms, wore gloves, and went on an expedition to clean the city streets early in the morning as done by the BBMP women workers. As reported, the women BBMP workers get 50% less as compared to the male worker. We met as many as we could, thanked them for their endless services and shared the message of A Clean City through our mission. We also took immense pride in cleaning our college campus. We also strengthened the women maintenance staff team. I took an opportunity on IWD 2016 celebrations to share the message and vision of our SDG 2030 and Goal 5 widely among these 300+ young men and women.

In the afternoon, we invited 150 women and young girls from that section of the society who has been providing relentless services to the society yet as women they are never accepted. These women were orphans, BBMP women workers, sex workers, acid attack survivors, household workers and college maintenance staff. These women had been invited as the Chief Guest of the event. We screened an inspirational kannada (local language) movie  “Gulabi Talkies” for them, provided each one of them with Lunch and respected their work by listening to all of them and by giving a gift. These women have taken due pride on being invited to such an esteemed institution and on receiving such hospitality and love.

We had a small discussion with these women, as it’s equally important to involve the marginalized women of our society in the forefront of our vision of 2030. Listening to the grievances of each one of them, we realized the aged women get out-tracked from the support of government due to which, these women are exposed to death on the streets.

Here are some photos from the day:

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Thousands of Young Students, Boys & Girls, Joined DYDF in Bangladesh for Three Genius Week Events Focused on Gender Equality

Dhrubotara Youth Development Foundation (DYDF) organized three events in Bangladesh at Noakhali Science & Technology University, Sylhet Sahid Minar, Kazi Jalaluddin High School, Sylhet.

Thousands of young students, boys and girls, joined the events, as well as the Honorable Deputy Director of the Women’s Development Department, the Honorable Deputy Direct of the Youth Development Department, and the Vice Chancellor.  

The events included rallies, seminars, panel discussions, a Human Chain to build awareness of issues, and a debate competition to find out solutions to problems. The local administration promised that they will use the findings from the events. Print and electronic media covered the events. 

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Raising The Bar Hosted 4 Genius Events in NYC, and You Can Listen to Them All as Podcasts

Raising the Bar is a worldwide initiative aimed at making education a part of a city’s popular culture. They create one of a kind, knowledge-drive events in unusual locations. In New York City, they partnered with 92Y to put together four events as part of this year’s 7 Days of Genius Festival. All of the events were sold out! Good news is they are now all available as podcasts. Check it out:

  • Transforming Health with Small Data‘ by Deborah Estrin, Professor of Computer Science, Cornell Tech —-> Podcast
  • ‘Scents and Sensibility’ by Stuart Firestein, Professor of Biological Sciences, Columbia University —-> Podcast
  • ‘Decision Making & the Brain’ by Moran Cerf, professor of neuroscience and business, Kellogg School of Management —> Podcast
  • Disrupting the Status Quo’ by Leyla Acaroglu, Sustainability Provocateur, Designer and Sociologist —> Podcast

And here are some photos from the events:

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7 Days of Genius Friday Recap

A recap from yesterday. Check out some of the 7 Days of Genius events that happened around the world:

  • In Detroit, MI, Ponyride‘s residents and founding leaders offered examples and advice for growing genius ideas into a business at a workshop called “Ingenius Incubation”.

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  • At Impact Hub Rome, three individuals who have excelled in different field engaged an audience with their stories about times in their lives when they felt they had discovered their personal genius.

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  • We also received some beautiful photos from events that happened earlier this week!

In Bangladesh:

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And in Budapest:Screen Shot 2016-03-12 at 10.56.56 AM

And in New York City:

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Continue to follow #thatsgenius to see the great tweets from our global partners exploring genius solutions around the world!

A Brazilian Meal of Genius

By Daniel Lewis.

Brazil1Our meal of genius was three-course; an appetizer of an innovative political education platform called Politize; a main course of IDoCode hands-on programming training; and a desert of an all-in-one emergency services app called SOS Fácil. After each course was tasted, a panel of experts gave their feedback and questions to figure out what truly made these recipes, genius.

Politics for People who Don’t do Politics

Diego Calegari, the state secretary of education of Santa Catarina has brought politics to the masses through his political education platform; Politize. Politize works to ensure that the people effected by politics understand it. Politize takes complex topics and boils them down to accessible, bite-sized pieces that anyone can digest, it turns political theater into informed politics.


Learning…is fun?

Many see programming as the language of the future. Leonardo Zambaldi plans to make that future a reality with I Do Code; a code school based out of Florianopolis that teaches coding to kids and adults through everyone’s favorite medium: games. I Do Code is working to create the next generation of Brazilian coders; upgrading kids from just playing their games to actually making them!


Connected EMS

Nowadays, you can hail a taxi, a taco, and even a litter of kittens but medical services are stuck in the 911—operator age. Claudia Toledo’s solution for this is an app called SOS Fácil. SOS Facil gives the patient all the necessary information to battle any illness. It knows which hospitals are closer, busier and which have the necessary facilities to treat a given condition. It’s a doctor’s office in your pocket with all of your medical information, doctor ratings and even built in videochat so that the medical process is made both simple and transparent.


A delicious meal indeed!

To Expose the Truth of Mental Hospitals, Nellie Bly Feigned Insanity to Study One

Big Think is partnering with 92Y to bring you a video series on female genius as part of its 7 Days of Genius Festival.

Published on Mar 9, 2016

Nellie Bly’s achievements are truly outsized: she spoke out for women’s rights, feigned insanity to expose the truth of mental health treatment, and travelled around the world in less than 80 days.

7 Days of Genius Thursday Recap

A recap from yesterday. Check out some of the 7 Days of Genius events that happened around the world:

  • In Guatemala, Grafiaetc and Movillidad hosted a pitch night around the topic of genius ideas in mobility. Groups delivered their business models and the mentors selected the most interesting project. The winners won a prize to implement their project in an incubator.

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  • Meanwhile, in El Salvador and Honduras, groups got together to watch the live stream of the event in Guatemala!
  • At the Central Synagogue in New York City, Rabbi Geoff Mitelman & Stevel Gimbel, author of “Einstein’s Jewish Science” got together for a lecture on Genius, Einstein, & Judaism. They discussed how Judaism influenced Einstein’s unique brand of genius and where science and religion can meet.
  • At the same time, UN Women and Dhubotara Youth Development Foundation (DYDF) hosted a workshop in Bangladesh. The workshop focused on finding a youth led genius solution to gender equality.
  • In Florianopolis, Brazil, three Brazilian entrepreneurs used the Pecha Kucha, 20×20 format to share their ideas of how we can use technology for the greater good. Afterwards, they field on-the-spot questions and feedback from the audience.
  • And lastly, in the United Kingdom, UN Women and Global Allithia Limited, a diplomatic consultancy that engages governments to adopt the sustainable development goals and further the 2030 agenda, engaged global leaders to discuss disruptive solutions that bring out the true ‘genius’ in all.

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Continue to follow #thatsgenius to see the great tweets from our global partners exploring genius solutions around the world!

Be A Genius! Move Ahead, Make A Difference – Let Nothing Stand in Your Way: 7 Days of Genius in Lahore, Pakistan

Be A Genius! Move Ahead, Make A Difference – Let Nothing Stand in Your Way: Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality was held at UCP School of Media Studies in Lahore, Pakistan. The event was organized by Youth Revolution Clan in Collaborations with 92Y, UN Interagency network on Youth Development’s Working Group on Youth and Gender and Cultural Infusion as a celebration of 7 Days of Genius. The event reflected on how to accelerate the 2030 Agenda, how to come forward and bring genius solutions to build the momentum for the effective implementation of the new Sustainable Development Goals. The Event equally focused on new commitments under UN Women’s Step It Up initiative, and other existing commitments on gender equality, women’s empowerment and women’s human rights.

 Member of the National Assembly Ms. Shaista Parvez and Youth of Pakistan took a pledge to solve the Gender Disparity Issues by providing Genius Solutions to Achieve the Gender Equality Goal of the United Nations.

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7 Days of Genius Wednesday Recap

A recap from yesterday. Check out some of the 7 Days of Genius events that happened around the world:

  • In Mexico City, Impact Hub and Movillidad hosted a pitch night around the topic of genius ideas in mobility.

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  • At the Whizin Center for Continuing Education in Los Angeles, CA, historian and author John Paul Thornton identified and exposed the profound secret lessons that existed within some of the masterpieces of the world’s greatest master-artists.
  • Meanwhile, in NYC Think Olio celebebrated an unknown genius. Nancy Cunard was a genius flapper, muse, and poet of the Jazz Age. Learn more about Nancy and the event here!
  • Mexico City wasn’t the only city where people were pitching their genius ideas last night. In Budapest, Impact Hub hosted a pro action cafe on genius ideas, an evening with creative and inspirational conversations where participants were invited to share ideas and get input to help move from questions to action.
  • In Liberia, UN Women & Messengers for Peace co-hosted an event with a series of activities such as debate, poem recitation, cultural dance & more.
  • And in Nepal, Spiny Babbler brought together individuals from the government, schools, pre-schools, and shelters to unearth young geniuses and showcase their ideas and their solutions for a nation that is suffering.
  • And continue to follow #thatsgenius to see the great tweets from our global UN Women partners exploring genius solutions to gender inequality. Here’s a couple of the amazing tweets you’ll find:

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An Update from 7 Days of Genius in Nepal

by Sanjog Thakuri


Greetings from Nepal

Yesterday to mark International Women’s Day coordinating with various Youth organizations, Yuwalaya organized a Men’s March against Violence against Women and Girls. More than 100 men on Tuesday held a march in Lalitpur expressing their commitment against violence against women and girls. More than 15 youth organisations had joined hands to hold the Men’s March: Men against Violence against Women and Girls, on the occasion of the 106th International Women’s Day.

One of the participants was prominent human rights activist and former member of the National Human Rights Commission Gauri Pradhan. Pradhan addressed a corner assembly concluding the rally and said gender equality in the nation was impossible unless men realise their role for rights of women in their households, communities and workplaces. The rally had begun from Lagankhel and passed through Kumaripati, Jawalakhel, Pulchok and Mangalbazaar before converging into the assembly at the Patan Durbar Square.

More than 50 women had supported the event by joining the concluding assembly. Speaking at the event, member duo of the National Women Commission Urmila Devi Bishwokarma and Dhaneshwory Chaudhary said the Commission was ready to support organisations and men in general who express solidarity in combating violence against girls and women.

Youth poets Nawaraj Parajuli, Rupesh Bhattarai and Saurav Basyal had recited poets on violence against women and girls.

President of Yuwalaya, the organisation coordinating the event, Sanjog Thakuri said the men’s solidarity for gender equality was imperative to establish an equitable world as envisaged by the Sustainable Development Goals (2015-30). 

Young Women welcomed all the men participants of the rally by giving them an orange colored balloon which symbolizes the commitment to ending gender-based violence. The team of volunteers also collected the Genius Ideas from the audiences and participants which we are documenting right now and will share with you soon.

Note: Men’s March is an initiative of Yuwalaya started in 2015 (first of it’s kind in Nepal) to generate an awareness on importance of Men’s role on ending gender based stereotype and violence.



An Update From 7 Days of Genius Satellite Event Hosts in Liberia


Our Genius week campaign in Liberia started today with radio talk shows ongoing in Liberia on gender equality. It was very interactive and youth as well as adults fully engaged us this morning. The momentum is high now! The stage has been set for us to actively engage the public on the quest for gender equality in Liberia with youth total involvement through the 7 Days of Genius solutions. We are using our speech and spark to beautify the fight for gender equality. 

And check out these photos from the morning radio show:



Overhauling Gifted Ed: Schools, Feds, Researchers Race to Better Identify Top Students of Color

by CAROLYN PHENICIE. Originally published on The Seventy Four. March 03, 2016.

Updated March 3This is one article in a series that examines gifted education, classroom creativity and geniuses in society. (See our full genius archive) The 74 is a proud media partner of the 92nd Street Y’s “7 Days of Genius,” a global series of events orchestrated to explore “the power of genius to make a positive impact on the world” running March 5-12. See events

The face of the American student is changing, and schools across the country are scrambling to keep up, providing additional services for the growing number of students in poverty and offering English language instruction to children who start school speaking dozens of languages.

After decades of working under the mandates of No Child Left Behind to raise all students’ achievement to a minimum level, schools and education leaders are increasingly turning their attention to the brightest children among the ever-diversifying student body.

It’s work that’s clearly needed: Black and Hispanic children represent 40 percent of students, but 26 percent of those enrolled in gifted and talented programs at schools that offer them, according to federal statistics from the 2011-12 school year.

To read the full article, please visit:

#AnonymousGenius: Helen B. Taussig

The Nightingale-Bamford School celebrates 7 Days of Genius by sharing work from their Anonymous Project. As part of the Open Doors Leadership Program, every girl from Kindergarten through Class XII has researched, studied, and created a project celebrating the life and work of a female leader whose achievements have been elided by history.  In the lead up to 92Y’s Genius Festival, we’ll highlight some of these overlooked and anonymous female geniuses.

Helen B. Taussig (1898-1986) was the American cardiologist who founded the field of pediatric cardiology.  She was also the first woman to ever be named President of the American Heart Association! Read more about her below.

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Genius Hour: A New Campaign to Bake Creativity Into the School Week

Original article published on The Seventy Four.

This is one article in a series that examines gifted education, classroom creativity and geniuses in society. (See our full genius archive) The 74 is a proud media partner of the 92nd Street Y’s “7 Days of Genius,” a global series of events orchestrated to explore “the power of genius to make a positive impact on the world” running March 5-12. See events

An open canvas plastered with bright blue poster paper lined the back door of Mr. Mark Maglione’s classroom at Lillian Drive Elementary School in Hazlet, New Jersey, as the multigrade teacher began the school’s first-ever “Genius Hour” last September. “In a perfect world, if you could study anything you wanted in school, what would it be?” he asked the gathered anxious third- and fourth-graders on that Friday afternoon.

Maglione recalls that the small hands started raising slowly, and then all at once, as the kids erupted with a diverse mix of responses, his students’ enthusiasm growing louder and more specific. Like all great geniuses, their ideas knew no bounds, ranging from how to build a model World War II fighter plane to using a swivel camera to record a presentation on their Chromebooks.

To read the full article, visit:

7 Days of Genius Floripa as a Lifestyle


By Daniel Lewis

If Hawaii and Silicon Valley had a baby that baby would be Florianopolis. Florianopolis (Floripa to the locals) is a city of about 400,000 in southern Brazil. It’s famous for having Brazil’s highest reported quality of life and has hopes of becoming Brazil’s very own Silicon Valley.

But what really makes Florianopolis so special? To find out, I went to talk to a few people who decided to move to Florianopolis for the next chapter of their lives.

Thiago — Developer

Where are you from?

São Paolo.

What drew you to Florianopolis?

Well, Floripa has a higher quality of life and lots more start-ups and free time without all of the pressures and traffic of a big city.

What’s surprised you the most so far?

People are friendlier and usually better educated here. They like to work and have fun. In Sao Paolo, people leave work at 7-8PM, sit in traffic, eat dinner and go to sleep. Here, people really enjoy their lives.

Victor — College Student

How long have you lived in Floripa?

Four years.

In those four years, what have been your favorite things about Florianopolis?

Something I really like about Floripa is that it’s filled with lots of smaller companies where the goals can change and your voice is heard. I’m from a city outside of Sao Paolo, and all of the companies there are massive corporations—you just get lost in them.

Daniel — Me!

I’m an American who’s been living in Florianopolis for about 6 months. What’s stood out to me is Floripa’s natural beauty. A few hours of traffic here can easily become a wonderful wilderness tour—with the added bird calls of wailing horns and revving motorcycles. All of this is what makes Florianopolis so special.

Behind Our Favorite Children’s Books, a Woman Who Championed Imagination

Big Think is partnering with 92Y to bring you a video series on female genius as part of its 7 Days of Genius Festival.

Some of our most timeless children’s books — The Giving Tree, Charlotte’s Web, Where the Wild Things Are, Goodnight Moon — are the result of the little-known publisher Ursula Nordstrom. Check out this video to learn more about her!

7 Days of Genius: Tuesday Recap

More great genius happenings online and around the world today:

  • Raising the Bar hosted two events in NYC: one on decision-making & the brain with Moran Cerf and the other on disrupting the status quo with Leyla Acaroglu. Both events were sold out!
  • In honor of International Women’s Day, 92Y and Mental Floss co-hosted a Twitter chat on #anonymousgenius exploring some of the most important, but often overlooked geniuses that have improved our world as we know it. Check out Mental Floss’s shout-out to all the lady geniuses who invented things we can’t live without
  • The Chicago Humanities Festival hosted a 7 Days of Genius Event where Irvine Welsh, author of Trainspotting, discussed his distinctive literary style and influences with Jessa Crispin.
  • In Israel, ECOWEEK hosted a full day workshop to explore the idea of design and social good. The event included presentations by young and established architects, landscape architects, innovators, designers, and researchers from East and West Jerusalem.
  • In Denmark, an international youth movement, AYUDH, partnered with UN Women to put together an event called “Geniuses Across Borders: Stepping it Up for Gender Equality”.
  • And continue to follow #thatsgenius to see the great tweets from our global UN Women partners exploring genius solutions to gender inequality. Here’s a couple of the amazing tweets you’ll find:

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The DO School Participates in 7 Days of Genius with a Gathering Focused on Social Innovation and Changemaking

This Sunday, March 6 the DO School brought together NYC university students participating in our Innovate NYC program for Gathering #3. The agenda for the day emphasized the development of the students’ social innovation and changemaking skills – working their way through the DO School Method to ensure they are fully prepared for the Shared Resource Challenge being given by New York City Economic Development Corporation coming this June.

The emphasis of the day made the opportunities for engaging 92Y’s 7 Days of Genius festival unmistakable. The #thatsgenius ethos of the 7 Days festival enabled us to bring in special guests like Shana Dressler, Director at Google’s 30 Weeks, to share lessons and insights with the students, as they worked their way through a “NewWater” challenge – getting NYC community members to think differently about where their water is sourced.

As New York City’s first experiential education program bringing together students from across such a broad range of schools,[i] Innovate NYC will build upon the strength of the diverse backgrounds of its students to both deliver on the Shared Resource Challenge while also teaching them universally valuable skills in a truly tangible way.  Special thanks to Conscious Company Magazine for providing support by making a year’s worth of issues available to the students at our gathering.

After a great day at 30 Weeks and working towards our #thatsgenius result the DO School is excited to look to next Monday, when our Berlin campus opening & pitch night will be one of the final events for the 7 Days of Genius festival. Our Innovate NYC students meanwhile will enjoy their spring breaks before reconvening in April for our next chapter.

[i] [1] Students are participating from the following NYC universities: Borough of Manhattan Community College, Brooklyn Law School, John Jay College of Criminal JusticeColumbia University, The Cooper Union, Fordham University, Guttman Community College, Macaulay Honors College, The New School, & New York University.

2 Geniuses, 2 Americas: Why I Want My Students to Read Ta-Nehisi Coates But Believe Lin-Manuel Miranda

by Robert Pondiscio. Original article published on The Seventy Four. March 3, 2016.

This is one article in a series that examines gifted education, classroom creativity and geniuses in society. (See our full genius archive) The 74 is a proud media partner of the 92nd Street Y’s “7 Days of Genius,” a global series of events orchestrated to explore “the power of genius to make a positive impact on the world” running March 5-12. See events

I have no idea if Lin-Manuel Miranda has read Ta-Nehisi Coates’ “Between the World and Me”; nor am I aware if Coates has seen Miranda’s “Hamilton” on Broadway. But it would be fascinating to listen to the two of them discuss each other’s work and their views on what it means to be young, black or brown, and American today.
All of us who work in classrooms with children of color would be richer if we could eavesdrop on such an exchange.
The parallels are striking. Both are young men of color who have created two of the most praised and dissected cultural works of the moment. Both were recent and richly deserving Macarthur Foundation “genius grant” recipients. Each turns his creative lens on our nation. But their respective visions of America signaled through their work, could scarcely be more different.
To read the full article, visit:

The Genius of Storytelling in Rome


As part of 7 Days of Genius, Impact Hub Rome put together a Genius Night dedicated to the power of creative genius and its positive impact on society.

On March 11th, people came together to hear from four amazing genius storytellers:

  • Carlo Boschetto, an inventor
  • Paola Pacetti, an author and musician
  • Oliver Page, founder of a startup
  • Gabriele Caiazzo, a student and inventor

To learn more about this event, visit the Facebook page:


7 Days of Genius in Anchorage, Alaska

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The Anchorage Museum partnered with 92nd St Y to celebrate their 7 Days of Genius Festival through family programming throughout the museum that explored what genius looks like in Alaska and the North.

Included with museum admission:

  • March 5 – Create your own snow goggles. Held in conjunction with the exhibition “Near the Bear,” looking at the genius of Northern adaptation.
  • March 6 – Take a guided tour of the Anchorage Museum, highlighting themes, objects, ideas and creative pieces that showcase the Genius of Northern Adaptation and Creative Design.
  • March 12 — Create your own hydroponic garden. Vertical Harvest Hydroponics is in Spark! Lab to talk about the genius of creative design through their innovative approach to making hydroponic gardening in Alaska more accessible.

#AnonymousGenius: Dr. Dorothy Hansine Andersen

The Nightingale-Bamford School celebrates 7 Days of Genius by sharing work from their Anonymous Project. As part of the Open Doors Leadership Program, every girl from Kindergarten through Class XII has researched, studied, and created a project celebrating the life and work of a female leader whose achievements have been elided by history.  In the lead up to 92Y’s Genius Festival, we’ll highlight some of these overlooked and anonymous female geniuses.

Dr. Dorothy Hansine Anderson was the first person to identify cystic fibrosis and created the first tests to diagnose it. Read more about her below.


#AnonymousGenius: Francoise Barre-Sinoussi

The Nightingale-Bamford School celebrates 7 Days of Genius by sharing work from their Anonymous Project. As part of the Open Doors Leadership Program, every girl from Kindergarten through Class XII has researched, studied, and created a project celebrating the life and work of a female leader whose achievements have been elided by history.  In the lead up to 92Y’s Genius Festival, we’ll highlight some of these overlooked and anonymous female geniuses.

One student highlighted Francoise Barre-Sinoussi, who, in 1983, helped discover that HIV is the cause of AIDs. This discovery remains vital in the search for a cure for AIDS.


How a 27 Year-Old Poet Became the World’s First Computer Programmer

Big Think is partnering with 92Y to bring you a video series on female genius as part of its 7 Days of Genius Festival.

Check out this video about Ada Lovelace. The daughter of a mathematically gifted mother and the Romantic poet Lord Byron, Ada Lovelace’s understanding of computational logic was matched only by her interest in art and poetry.

But Big Think isn’t the only one talking about Ada Lovelace as a female genius. Students at Nightingale-Bamford School are celebrating 7 Days of Genius by sharing work from their Anonymous Project. As part of the Open Doors Leadership Program, every girl from Kindergarten through Class XII has researched, studied, and created a project celebrating the life and work of a female leader whose achievements have been elided by history.  

5 first grade students chose to highlight Ada Lovelace as part of the Anonymous Genius Project. Check out their awesome artwork!



Think Olio celebrates an unknown genius of the Jazz Age

Brooklyn-based 7 Days of Genius partner, Think Olio, celebrates Jazz Age genius Nancy Cunard & the genius professor who inspired their event March 8 at Chinatown Soup. 

He wore a fedora on the first day of class and he pulled a flask out of his pocket within the first seven minutes. He knew the Jazz Age better than Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Picasso, or any of those who lived it. There wasn’t an empty seat in the classroom.

Every Monday and Wednesday from 2:30 to 3:45, in Professor Charles Riley II’s class, I was brought to another time. I was there in Paris living the Jazz Age as vividly as any of the writers, painters, and expatriates of the time. I’d watch the clock, unable to understand how the hour and fifteen minutes could pass so quickly. I’d sneak out my phone in an attempt to record his analysis of a poem by Gertrude Stein or Picasso’s Woman in White, and he’d yell at me to put the doohickey away.

I’d take “A Clean Well-Lighted Place” to dinner with my parents and we would attempt to break apart Hemingway’s writing. I’d tell them that I wished they could come to the class, that they would love to see this guy in action. I wished there were a way that I could share the experience with them.

With Think Olio I can. I was able to bring Riley to a loft in the Chelsea where he taught on the Jazz Age as an audience of 25 took it all in over French wine. We revitalized the literary salons of Paris with a lesson on the literary salons of Paris. Riley was the star of the show, but it was really my night because I was finally sharing him with the world outside our classroom.

And for the 7 Days of Genius Festival, I am excited to say that he is teaching with us for a second time. He’ll be giving a passionate lesson on Nancy Cunard, the unknown genius of the Jazz Age, on March 8 at Chinatown Soup.

7 Days of Genius Festival: Find Your Path to Genius at the Free Library

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By August M.

Information and books and podcasts and programming and computers and Wi-Fi and a great place to hang out: All of this and more make up the Free Library of Philadelphia.

But what does the Library mean to you? We aim to help you find out.

From March 5-12, the Free Library participated in the 7 Days of Genius Festival, in partnership with the 92nd Street Y. This week-long extravaganza of events and conversations showcased genius in many of its various forms, from cooking for education, to advances in technology, to showcasing the expert minds of young people and how they’ll shape the world. The Festival was a celebration of the mind, yes, but at the Free Library, it was also a celebration of the ways libraries unlock genius in every community in our city.

Click here to learn more and check out FLP’s full list of Genius events.

Drink a beer. Have a Laugh. Learn How to Build a Spaceship with Raising the Bar.

Raising the Bar is excited to bring you a special mini-series to celebrate 7 Days of Genius.

Check out some of their awesome events!

  • You can learn how your brain both senses and makes sense of taste and smell – and also, how it’s fooled at their talk on Scents & Sensibility.
  • At a talk on Transforming Health with Small Data you can discuss techniques for using data to close the gap between what we are born with and what we die from.
  • Join neuroscientist Professor Moran Cerf for Decision-making & the Brain to talk about the processes underlying our decision making and the way our brains navigate our choices.
  • Explore the ways in which the human condition is primed for creative rebels and change agents to disrupt the status quo for activated social change at Disrupting the Status Quo. 



#AnonymousGenius: Mary Elizabeth Walton

The Nightingale-Bamford School celebrates 7 Days of Genius by sharing work from their Anonymous Project. As part of the Open Doors Leadership Program, every girl from Kindergarten through Class XII has researched, studied, and created a project celebrating the life and work of a female leader whose achievements have been elided by history.  In the lead up to 92Y’s Genius Festival, we’ll highlight some of these overlooked and anonymous female geniuses.

Check out Mary Elizabeth Walton. In 1879, she invented a method that helped cut down the amount of pollution emitted through the chimneys of locomotives, automobiles, and residences.  Later, she invented a method for reducing noise produced from the elevated railway.


Who is the Ultimate Genius? This Week’s Match Ups

92Y and MSNBC gathered 32 world shakers and placed them head-to-head in one bracket spanning four regions: Politics, Innovation, Science, and Morality. Genius indeed takes many forms, and which kind will triumph comes down to you. 

Who do you think is the ultimate Genius? We’re now in the semi-finals and here’s who is competing this week:

Barack Obama vs. George Washington Carter & Malala Yousafzai vs. the Theory of Relativity.

Don’t forget to vote this week — and tune in next week to see who wins it all!

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#AnonymousGenius: Vera Rubin

The Nightingale-Bamford School celebrates 7 Days of Genius by sharing work from their Anonymous Project. As part of the Open Doors Leadership Program, every girl from Kindergarten through Class XII has researched, studied, and created a project celebrating the life and work of a female leader whose achievements have been elided by history.  In the lead up to 92Y’s Genius Festival, we’ll highlight some of these overlooked and anonymous female geniuses.

Check out Vera Rubin, an Astronomer who helped pioneer work around galaxy rotation rates.




How a Team of Female Astronomers Revolutionized Our Understanding of Stars

Big Think is partnering with 92Y to bring you a video series on female genius as part of its 7 Days of Genius Festival.

Check out this video featuring astronomer Anna Frebel as she talks about the women who pioneered the field of stellar research.

Why Fewer Women Succeed at the Highest Levels of Science — From a Woman Who Did

Where Are All the Women Scientists?

Big Think is partnering with 92Y to bring you a video series on female genius as part of its 7 Days of Genius Festival.

Check out this video with Dr. Joy Hirsch, Director of the Brain Function Laboratory at Yale University, as she discusses the challenges women face in the professional world of science.

ECOWEEK Joins 92Y For Seven Days of Genius

NGO ECOWEEK joins 92Y for Seven Days of Genius. ECOWEEK is hosting satellite events co-organized with local partners in Jerusalem, Athens, Thessaloniki, Bucharest and Sarajevo. Young and established entrepreneurs, designers, innovators, architects, landscape architects, researchers, and planners, will come together for a day of presentations, brainstorming workshops, and networking on new and established ‘genius’ ideas. The guiding theme of the week is ‘DESIGN FOR SOCIAL GOOD’.

ECOWEEK’s work focuses on sustainable design at international gatherings and design workshops. In 2008, ECOWEEK organized its first conference in Greece with the AIA Continental Europe. Inspired by Egyptian architect Hassan Fathy, young and established professionals work together at ECOWEEK events to solve real problems in real sites, aiming to learn new skills and knowledge, while benefiting the local communities.

ECOWEEK is an NGO based in Israel and Greece, established by architect Elias Messinas, a Yale-graduate and Ford Motor Company Fellow, with the mission to raise environmental awareness and to promote sustainability and integrated development. When Elias was an architecture undergraduate student, he travelled to Egypt to meet Fathy and was inspired by the vision of a man who tried to change the architectural culture of his country with sustainable practices. “From our work in 15 countries around the world,” says Messinas, “where we bring together young professionals of different cultures and faiths, we have learned to value cooperation. I like a quote by legendary innovator John Seely Brown who said ‘conversation is a catalyst for innovation’. In all our events we encourage dialogue and teamwork to empower young professionals to innovate and change.”

More information below about the Seven Days of Genius events organized by ECOWEEK and its local partners:

Athens, Greece – March 5, hosted by AKTO College of Art and Design, includes presentations from young and established architects, landscape architects, designers and innovators from Greece and abroad.

Thessaloniki, Greece – March 7, hosted by TECHNOPOLIS Business Park with presentations from young and established innovators, designers and architects from Greece and abroad.

Jerusalem, Israel – March 8, hosted by the American Center and includes presentations by young and established architects, landscape architects, innovators, designers, and researchers from East and West Jerusalem.

Bucharest, Romania – March 10, hosted by Seneca Anticafe, and includes presentations by young and established academics and professionals, and Urbanism Landscape Social Diploma Projects from Bucharest.

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina – March 11, hosted by Networks Hub and includes presentations primarily by young and established innovators from Sarajevo.

“The ECOWEEK model is to work closely with local partners, so that each event engages, empowers and benefits local entrepreneurs and professionals, it is locally generated and relevant to the local community,” says Elias. “I take this opportunity to thank our partners who worked with us in making these events possible: AKTO Art and Design College,, The Mamidakis Foundation, Design Lobby, ArchiSearch, Nanotypos, TECHNOPOLIS ICT Business Park, The American Center, The US Embassy in Israel, JEST, Seneca Anticafe, Do-It_Achitectura, Networks, International University of Sarajevo, Lift-Spatial Initiatives, and the ECOWEEK Greenhouse.”

To learn more about the ECOWEEK satellite events visit:

Who is the Ultimate Genius?

92Y and MSNBC gathered 32 world shakers and placed them head-to-head in one bracket spanning four regions: Politics, Innovation, Science, and Morality. Genius indeed takes many forms, and which kind will triumph comes down to you. 

There are four match-ups this week and voting is now underway for round 3. Who do you think is the ultimate Genius? Here are some of the matches up on this week’s line-up:

  • Lin Manuel Miranda, the Genius behind the hit Broadway musical Hamilton, or George Washington Carver, the botanist, chemist, and scientist, who invented over 100 products made with peanuts.
  • Malala Yousafzai, human rights and education activist and youngest ever Nobel Prize Laureate, or Rosa Parks, one of the most iconic figures in the Civil Rights Movement who spurred the Montgomery Bus Boycott after refusing to give up her seat on a segregated bus.

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As you’re getting excited for the official start of 7 Days of Genius, think about Geniuses from past and present, and join in on the fun of the Ultimate Genius Showdown and vote for your favorite Genius!

Drumroll, please…

Last month, we launched three challenges as part of our 7 Days of Genius Festival to unleash Genius ideas and generate Genius excitement leading up to the official Festival in March. We asked individuals across the United States to tackle some of the biggest issues facing our communities. The bolder and more ambitious the idea the better!

Now, the top six submissions are with the expert judges who are evaluating submissions to decide on first, second, and third place winners. We’re excited to announce these Genius ideas soon, but in the meantime, you can learn more about the competitions below. 

For over a month, submissions were open on Facebook for three competitions. We received hundreds of submissions, and the ones with the most likes moved on to the final round of judging. In addition to cash prizes, winners will be connected to experts relevant to their idea and may have the opportunity to have their idea featured on MSNBC.

Here’s what we asked:

1. Start-Up Challenge

92Y and Impact Hub partnered to unearth the next generation of social entrepreneurs. Do you have an idea that could impact communities, environments and cultures in an innovative way? We’re looking to accelerate the growth of early-stage companies with the potential to have a major positive impact on our world.

2. Design for Good (for high school students)

What are your community’s biggest needs? Team up with up to three classmates and submit your solution to one of your community’s biggest problems through a human-centered design process. Winning submissions will leverage a design thinking process: integrating the needs of people, the potential of new technologies and innovation.

3. Challenge for a New Religion 

92Y and On Being invite you to imagine a religious or philosophical framework that that cuts across boundaries, strengthens our sense of community and acts as a force for good. Design a framework for a new belief system — or a reimagining of an existing belief system — and share it with us.

Brazil: beaches, endless surfers, music, dancing…GENIUS??

Florianopolis, Brazil: 45 beaches, endless surfers, even more parties, lots of soccer, and technology. Lots of it, actually. You probably imagine Brazil and think of Rio and the Amazon; of vibrant and colorful culture and music. Honestly, you probably think of anything other than technology. But here, in Brazil, when you mix an emerging tech industry with our uniquely creative culture and one of the highest levels of income inequality in the world, a solution appears: Tech for Good.

Technology can be used for profit, for transport, for health, for really just about anything. All that’s needed is the initiative and the resources to put it in place. Brazil has a lot of the former; you can nearly taste the energy and inspiration in the tropical air. But the latter, well, that’s where we come in. Impact Hub Floripa, along with the four other Impact Hub’s scattered throughout Brazil are the resource providers. We are an on-ramp for those who want to use tech to improve society.

Here, in our 160m2 space, we are home to a social network for health providers, a governance innovator, a storyteller, an incubator, a blogger; nearly anything you can think of all under one roof, mingling, meshing and mutating. Impact Hub is where transformative ideas that can change the way the world thinks and acts are born. It’s where tech can be leveraged and transformed for good.

And with our upcoming 7 Days of Genius, Tech for Good Mash Up we hope to bring our energy and inspiration to an even greater Brazilian and worldwide population. Check back here for updates!

Social Impact Start-up Challenge!

92Y & Impact Hub NYC partnered on the 7 Days of Genius” Start-up Challenge. The winner will score $10,000 + IHNYC membership. The deadline to enter was February 12, 2016. If you missed it, check back here for updates on the winning genius ideas.

Also, don’t miss the IHNYC & House of Genius co-sponsored event on Saturday, March 5, as part of the 7 Days of Genius festival. See last paragraph for details.*

  1. Christina Cobb talks with Asha Curran, Director, Center of Innovation and Social Impact at 92Y.

The concept of genius typically celebrates the exceptional individual. How does the 7 Days of Genius festival integrate genius and community?

As a community center, we know that extraordinary things can happen when you bring people together and provide the right kind of spark. 7 Days of Genius is designed to generate that spark. We are hosting a slew of talks and events here at 92Y that consider genius through a variety of lenses–technology, philosophy, science, literature, education and more. We’re also working with partners in cities around the world, including Impact Hub NYC, to engage people around genius in ways that are relevant to them in their own communities. We hope that 7 Days of Genius amplifies many voices and points of view, and leverages technology and social media to bring people together in meaningful ways.

The festival definitely explores the lives and work of individual geniuses, both past and present, through a middle-school curriculum on famous geniuses; with our psychobiography series that explores the personal lives of extraordinary people; and in a free interactive exhibit for families dedicated to Leonardo da Vinci, among other initiatives. But we’re also interested in unearthing genius in typically untapped places including underserved, under-resourced communities around the world, where some of our global partners are bringing adults and children together to develop new ideas for the benefit of their own communities. We hope to give voice to the ideas of people who don’t have a platform like the great academics and public intellectuals do.

Why did 92Y choose to partner with Impact Hub for the Start-Up Challenge?

92Y and Impact Hub definitely share values and have complementary missions and audiences. Not only are we aligned in our commitment to innovation and entrepreneurship, but both our organizations are asking the big questions about how those things can positively shape the future. And 7 Days of Genius is all about bringing partners together so that the whole festival is more than the sum of its parts. We think the Impact Hub community is full of people who should be entering the start-up challenge!

Read the full interview!