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Illuminate x Markham

Hello! My name is Maggie and I am a Grade 11 student at Alexander Mackenzie High School. Today, I had the pleasure to attend Illuminate x Markham’s regional conference. Here are my thoughts highlighting what I learned:


The first keynote speaker, Christal Wang, talked about the importance of giving more than taking. In a world of consumers, it is all the more important to contribute to creating instead of consuming. Additionally, Christal introduced the Theory of Change (TOC) that utilizes backwards mapping to determine a plan in achieving impact goals. Overall, her presentation on her experiences in her career emphasized the ideas of taking risks, continuous learning, staying true to your values and having fun. She also challenged me to reflect on my own values and taught me to let my values guide me through my journeys.



Mash Chowdhury was the second speaker, who shared insights into cybersecurity and consulting. I received a lot of insights and learned many new terms, including the two types of incident responses (proactive and reactive), cyber maturity assessment, and steps in a project (Request for Proposal & Statement of Work). He also emphasized the importance of commitment and pushing oneself into uncomfortable situations.


I had an amazing time at this conference and really enjoyed hearing from all of the speakers. It was fun working with my team to create a project we were all passionate about. Although we encountered various challenges throughout, we have gained so many experiences and now have a better understanding of how we might improve in the future. Through the conference, I not only learned more about social entrepreneurship but also more about myself and how I want to pursue my future. Thank you for this opportunity!