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TEDxYouth@HFSInternational: Empowering Youth for Change

The day before something is a breakthrough, it’s a crazy idea.

- Peter Diamandis

The 5th edition of TEDxYouth@HFSInternational was held on Saturday, January 21, 2023. The return of the prestigious event offline to the HFSI campus, after a gap of two pandemic-ridden years, was a celebratory occasion and in the TED-spurred spirit of ‘ideas worth spreading,’ the organizing committee brought together passionate women speakers with their own tales of empowerment to tell. Centered around the theme of ‘passion and perseverance paving the path to empowerment,’ the fifth edition of TEDxYouth@HFSInternational was committed to delivering compelling tales of women who struggled, survived and claimed their power in the process. Having always believed that women’s voices were the most powerful weapons they could wield, HFSI head of school and the visionary behind the TEDxYouth event, Mrs. Kalyani Patnaik wanted to host an edition that drove the core committee, in all their intellectual and social capacity, to scour the world for a roster of speakers who’d inspire the current crop of students to speak their truth into power. And truth be told, the speakers did – they spoke their truth into power and we are certain the students attending the event walked away from the event inspired and empowered to speak their own.

Graced by an inaugural talk by the HFSI trustee Dr. Niranjan Hiranandani, the speakers for the day included Dr. Prerna Shinde, Ms. Erica Goyal, Mrs. Kalyani Patnaik, Mrs. Megha Chheda, Ms. Sunita Rathod and Ms. Tannaz Irani. Hailing from different walks of life, our speakers had incredible life tales to tell our young audience. From our young grade 3 student Erica who addressed how parents need to accommodate and nurture their kids’ passions as her parents did for hers’ to Mrs. Megha Chheda who battled abandonment issues, anxiety, depression and a failed marriage to walk multiple academic and professional trajectories until she found the one she loves, from Dr. Shinde’s unswerving spirit of service for rural India to Ms. Goyal’s relentless battle against her own hardships because she came from that background, HFSI heard tales of resounding success, tales of enduring empowerment, tales of resilient relationships with self throughout the day to inspire the audience to find their passion, to persevere through thick and thin and to choose one’s own self above everything and everybody else. Following close on the heels, Ms. Tannaz inspired students to understand how to turn a deaf ear to naysayers and go against the grain to redefine what success means to you personally. Our head of school, Mrs. Kalyani Patnaik also drew on her own experiential journey as an educator to inspire an esoteric dialogue with self in order to open up a world of brave imagination, big dreams and bold vision.

The event also had breakout sessions in order to encourage intelligent dialogue between students and speakers to turn the event’s tender intent of bringing ideas to the forefront into tangible impact for our community of learners. The success of the event was evinced by the unending applause at the end of the event and HFSI aims to return with a bigger, brighter and better 6th edition in the coming year.


Miss-Sejal P

Faculty HFS International

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