by Nishima Chudasama, 10x10 Production Assistant

This past weekend, 10x10 participated in  CGIU, the Clinton Global Initiative’s annual conference for university students. Since 2007, students and national youth organizations have come together at CGIU to take action on global challenges in education, environment and climate change, peace and human rights, poverty alleviation, and public health. Each student attendee of the conference arrived armed with a specific commitment to address pressing issues on campus, in their community or in a different part of the world. The results when these students come together are inspiring.

During the conference, the 10x10 team met with dozens of students who stopped by our booth during “CGIU Exchange,” a place to trade ideas, get fresh perspectives and connect with new resources. These students shared the incredible work that they are doing in Uganda, China, Kenya, Haiti and in Austin, San Diego and upstate New York. No matter which commitment area the students felt rooted in, each agreed that education is at the heart of sustainable and positive social change.

CGIU also afforded an opportunity for students to have thoughtful dialogue with 10x10’s director, Richard Robbins, about resolving issues they encounter as they creatively engage with social issues. One Ugandan woman, who works to build schools in her country, wanted to know how to keep from making promises to people that you know you can’t fulfill. Another woman was concerned about not having the greatest film equipment with which to document stories she wanted to capture. All of these are issues that we at 10x10 work through together everyday, as storytellers committed to making a sensitive and impactful difference in communities that we partner with.  It was great to share our experiences with up-and-coming media makers.

To round out the day, Richard moderated a working session that explored the best ways to create “*Education Pathways and Opportunities for Adolescents.” *The panel included Joel Arquillos, (Executive Director, 826 LA) Margaret Meagher (Program Manager,  Youth Learning, The MasterCard Foundation) and Vivian Onano (Ambassador,  Global Give Back Circle).  The panelists reflected on their experiences in education systems both in the United States and abroad and participated in breakout conversations among students that followed the panel discussion. Students had great ideas about navigating common challenges and offered innovative solutions to address barriers to education in their own communities.

10x10 had a great time at CGIU! With so many students eager to learn about ways they can support and participate in 10x10, we are excited to launch the 10x10U Toolkit. Check it out for facts, ideas and 10 concrete ways you can help realize the goals of the 10x10 global campaign for girls’ education.