TEDxAlhamraa: Plot Twist reflects Saudi Vision 2030 goals

 TEDxAlhamraa: Plot Twist reflects Saudi Vision 2030 goals
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Dr. Samar Khan share her inspiring stories at the TEDx. (Photos/Supplied)
 TEDxAlhamraa: Plot Twist reflects Saudi Vision 2030 goals
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Updated 30 September 2019

TEDxAlhamraa: Plot Twist reflects Saudi Vision 2030 goals

 TEDxAlhamraa: Plot Twist reflects Saudi Vision 2030 goals
  • The Kingdom’s Vision 2030 Program has removed barriers that prevented Saudis from reaching their true potential in the fields they wanted in the past

JEDDAH: The second edition of TEDx in Jeddah, titled “TEDxAlhamraa: Plot Twists” took place at Waad Academy on Saturday. A number of Saudi speakers took to the stage and shared inspiring stories in front of a youthful audience.
Dr. Samar Khan, assistant professor and dean of the college of business at Effat University, gave her speech on “Theories in my life.”
She chose to study business, but was discouraged by certain people who told her the field had no promising future. She then switched to the English department and then attained her master’s degree and doctorate in business — a plot twist. She talked about four main theories: “Catastrophizing theory,” where people think a problem is bigger than it actually is, “minimizing
theory,” “mirror theory” and “humility theory.” Discussing the mirror theory, she said people in our lives are our mirrors.
“The person you want to tell news to first is your ideal mirror. Sometimes we make mistakes and choose the wrong mirrors — they are supposed to show the best in you.
“Some frames are expensive,” she added, referring to dear friendships that she would choose to amend rather than break off, “but I must
break mirrors that reflect back negativity.” Speaking to Arab News, Khan said sometimes we need to find specific assumptions in our lives. “Study them very well and at the end we will find specific theories that could change our lives. The Kingdom’s Vision 2030 Program has removed barriers that prevented Saudis from reaching their true potential in the fields they wanted in the past. The first Saudi opera singer, Sawsan Al-Bahiti, also gave a speech titled “Rising Ambitions” that talked about her career in music. Al-Bahiti studied mass communication at the American University of Sharjah, in the UAE. She fell in love with opera after taking a course in choir singing, and knew she wanted to pursue a career in music.
When she graduated in 2011 and came back to Jeddah, though, she had to face reality.
“There was strict conservatism in the country, and no job opportunities in singing. There was also conservatism from my family.”
She encouraged the audience to be their authentic selves and pursue their passion, adding: “When I leave this world, I want to leave a mark.”
A friend asked her to voice coach her 14-year-old daughter, and she said to herself: “This is what I want to do. I decided to be the ambassador of classical music in the Kingdom.”
Speaking to Arab News, she highlighted that Vision 2030 encouraged and supported her career goals: “Announcing the many projects in the music field such as the opera house and the music academy motivated me and reassured me that I am doing the right thing at the right time in the right place.”
Saudi art platform Arbab Al-Heraf is one of the organizations that supported the event, as well as last year’s which took place at King Abdul Aziz University.
Founder Abdullah Al-Hodaif said the event greatly supports young people. “Most of Arbab Al-Heraf’s initiatives focus on the youth, as they make up 60 percent of the population. Saudi Vision 2030 mostly focuses on the youth and their development, and what we present to them is part of the Kingdom’s vision.” He added it was important to have events such as TEDx in the Kingdom. “They consist of experiences from the youth. Most of Arbab Al-Heraf members have experiences of starting from zero and then taking off in their careers. TEDx focuses on real life experiences, and this is something Arbab Al-Heraf can relate to.”