Location: Athens, Greece
Role in Education Entrepreneurs: Organizer and Facilitator of Startup Weekend Education
How would you describe yourself in one sentence?
I like to create and share stories, organize interesting events, and participate in impactful communities.
Twitter Handle: @lidatsene
Favorite person or hashtag to follow on Twitter : @brainpicker
What do you do for work?
I’m the Director of Communications, Arts, & Educational Programs, and the Founder of Comicdom Press at Athens Comics Library. Essentially, I am a communications specialist, applying my science to different fields (academia, events, entrepreneurship, education, arts, etc). You can learn more here.
What do you like to do for fun?
I read comics, practice ballet, and experiment with creating things with my hands.
If you could have any teacher (dead or alive, real or fictional) who would it be and why?
Professor X from X-Men. He is a true leader that guides his students, respects their different personalities, and inspires and motivates them to explore and seek knowledge through various paths.
How did you discover Education Entrepreneurs?
Being a member of the Startup Weekend community, I read about it on UP Global’s webpage.
What’s been your involvement in Education Entrepreneurs to date?
I co-organized the first Startup Weekend Education event in Greece in 2014, and I am a Global Facilitator.
What’s the most challenging thing about being an Organizer and Facilitator?Sometimes it’s challenging to convince teams – especially educators- to have faith in their ideas and not give up during the weekend.
What’s the most rewarding thing about being an Organizer and Facilitator?
Seeing complete strangers not only transform into your co-workers over the weekend, but also become long-time partners and friends.
What’s the biggest piece of advice you’d give to those trying to build an education innovation community?
Try to work as much as you can with educators, as they are the key to unlock innovation inside and outside of classrooms. Provide them with as many resources as possible, listen to their needs, and build networks to foster collaboration between them and other creative people.
What’s the biggest piece of advice you’d give to people trying to create edtech products?
Understand the needs of students and educators, use crowdsourcing for new ideas, validate your product, and hack education as we know it today.
What’s the legacy you’d like to leave in education?
Long-term, I’d like to contribute to making the learning process an open, innovative, and collaborative adventure. Short-term, I’d like to teach others how they can use comics as an educational tool in every classroom and library.
What’s your favorite edtech company and/or innovative school, and why?
I will go with a classic choice: Khan Academy. It was a brilliant idea that gave everyone access to knowledge. It’s technology in the service of education, and it’s a company that truly lives by its motto, “You can learn anything!”
Finish the sentence: In my dream world, education would be…
…as creative as a comic book story.
What are the resources that you think anyone interested in innovating in education and/or building community should check out?:
- Sir Ken Robinson
- Cooney Center
- Institute of Play
- Lego Education
- Creative Mornings
- ASU&GSV Summit
Anything else you’d like to share?
Keep calm and continue to innovate and disrupt education!
More about Education Entrepreneurs
Education Entrepreneurs is the largest initiative in the world focused on helping people use entrepreneurship to improve education. Its suite of offerings include Startup Weekend Education, Startup Digest Education, Workshops, online resources, and a global network of Community Leaders. Spanning six continents, Education Entrepreneurs has created an unprecedented opportunity for anyone, anywhere to shape the future of education.
This post was co-authored by the Athens Startup Weekend Edu Team.
Come and spend the weekend of Jan 17-19, 2014 with SWEDU and become part of the innovation in education startup movement in Athens.
If you have an idea that can change education, come and pitch it at the 1st Startup Weekend themed “Education” in Greece. Mind you, this is only the second SWEDU in all of Europe!
Athens SWEDU is co-organized by a team of passionate learners, educators, social innovators and ed-tech designers. Some 50 energetic students, their professors at the Department of Communication, Media and Culture at Panteion University, Athens, The Impact Hub Athens Co-Founders and a talented UI Designer, have joined their efforts and enthusiasm into making SWEDU Athens a hot spot for innovation in education and learning. The event is hosted by The Impact Hub Athens, housed in a beautifully restored old house in the old center of the city, recently opened as a social startup and co-creation workspace.
Why Athens? Why education?
We aspire to make an impact on our present and our future. The time seems ripe as the country has been undergoing severe financial hardship and social discontent for the last 6 years, and unemployment is especially high among those under 25. University students, in particular, feel extremely insecure at the prospect of a future with very limited opportunities. Many are already fleeing abroad in search of more viable life and career prospects.
And yet, this is a time of great challenges and booming creativity along with a rising startup ecosystem in Greece, making its first bold steps in the global markets. The crisis is considered by many – especially by the youth – as an opportunity to “think out of the box” and make their own positive impact in their city and further ahead.
The Greek startup entrepreneurial ecosystem has been nurtured by the networking initiatives and social media writings of a small and pioneering tech and entrepreneurial-minded community, initiated many years before the outbreak of the economic crisis. The latter, however, may be considered as a “social accelerator” for raising citizens’ awareness of their own potential for creativity, collaboration and entrepreneurship. Over the last 3 years startup initiatives have flourished further as new funding, investing and advisors’ schemes, startup incubators and accelerators, and co-working spaces have mushroomed – especially in Athens.
Athens SWEDU aims to bring education at the forefront of a new emerging culture; namely, the culture of creative, problem-solving originators comprising the rising entrepreneurial scene in the country. As Athens SWEDU organizers we aspire to boost innovative ideas in order to build sustainable startups that can have a transformative impact on the learning process in various fields, including and mixing technology, culture, science, communication, entrepreneurship, marketing, design, social and sustainable innovation either on mobile and web platforms or in the physical settings of schools and universities.
Featuring a strong and diverse lineup of well established entrepreneurs and investors, mixed media designers, marketing and communication technology experts, science communicators, legal IT/Startup advisors and Ed-Tech educators as our inspiring speakers, mentors and judges, SWEDU Athens will provide participants with a valuable opportunity to interact with some of the biggest players in the country! We invite out participants to share their ideas and aspirations, and form a new generation of educational startups.
If you happen to be in Athens, or want to fly in for the occasion, tickets are available for purchase here.
Visit athensedu.startupweekend.org to learn more and do contact us for further information.