Youth LEAD’s annual Teenage Identity and Diversity Education (TIDE) Conference Memorial Day Weekend at Boston’s Northeastern University

Youth LEAD (Youth Leaders Engaging Across Differences) will be having its annual Teenage Identity and Diversity Education (TIDE) Conference, held each year over Memorial Day Weekend at Boston’s Northeastern University this year! The conference is planned and led by fifty high school students of diverse backgrounds, and the goals of the conference are to train teens to communicate respectfully and use their skills in discussions about highly charged issues; develop leadership and facilitation skills; understand what they are capable of; and foster bonds and friendships among the youth in attendance that will continue after the conference has ended. Conference attendees participate in workshops, dialogues, and other activities throughout the weekend that have been planned by high school students specifically for their peers. Adults working with teens can attend a parallel but separate adult track at the conference.
If you know of a group of high school students (classes of 2012-2015) that you think might be interested in the opportunity to attend this conference, and/or (2) if you are interested in attending the conference as an adult participant, contact them at the links below. If you do not work specifically with high school students or are unable to attend this year’s conference, perhaps you can put them in touch with those who work with high school youth that might be interested in this opportunity. Thank you!
http://youthleadonline.org/tide-conference/
(781) 784-0651

The Teenage Identity and  Diversity Education (TIDE) Conference is planned and led by teens who want to have their voices heard and their presence felt as a positive force in the global community. A three-day event planned by fifty high school students of diverse backgrounds, the conference seeks to train teens to communicate respectfully and use their skills in discussions about highly charged issues; develop leadership and facilitation skills; and foster bonds and friendships among the youth in attendance that will continue after the conference. Conference attendees will participate in workshops, dialogues, and other activities throughout the weekend that allow them to discover more about themselves and their own understanding of personal identity; learn about the beliefs and identities of others; and make their voices heard at a conference that has been planned by high school students specifically for their peers. This is an exciting opportunity to see future leaders in action! Adults working with teens attend a parallel but separate adult track at the conference. The conference is sponsored by Youth LEAD, formerly Interfaith Action, Inc., in collaboration with the Brudnick Center on Violence and Conflict at Northeastern University.
History of TIDE
TIDE was the creation of Dan, a 16 year-old, who wanted other teens to have a chance to
experience the power of teen-run interfaith programs. On June 26, 2007, after six months of planning, Youth LEAD’s teens ran the first ever TIDE conference at Harvard University. The youth planned and facilitated the activities; wrote a proposal to Dr. Diana Eck, Executive Director of The Pluralism Project at Harvard University; recruited participants; and coordinated the event logistics.
In his opening address at TIDE 2007, Dan noted that “the reason we spent so much time and effort on this conference is because we want to spark change in our community and in our state. The things we do [with Interfaith Action] might seem trivial, but each activity has changed us for the better and changed our community for the better. We hope to do the same today.” The teen-led workshops focused on strengthening communication skills necessary for the ensuing interfaith dialogue. Over fifty high school students attended the conference from across New England and even as far away as New Jersey.
Since then, TIDE conferences have been held at Tufts University, Wheaton College, and
Boston’s Northeastern University. In 2010, the TIDE Conference expanded into a three-day event to be held annually at Northeastern University. The multi-day conference now includes a pre-planned workshop series for both teens and adults on Saturday, as well as a plethora of original topical presentations and workshops on Sunday. 2010 also saw the expansion of TIDE into a national event, with groups coming from Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, and Ohio.

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