NYC Public School Grad Selected as 1 of 15 Globally
Karim Abouelnaga, Founder and CEO of Practice Makes Perfect, to take the stage at TED2017, joining newest class of 15 young innovators from four continents.
NEW YORK, NY, JANUARY 10, 2017—Education entrepreneur, Karim Abouelnaga has been selected as a TED Fellow, joining a class of 15 change-makers from around the world who will deliver a talk on the TED stage this April in Vancouver, reaching an audience of millions.
Karim Abouelnaga started Practice Makes Perfect, in 2010 at age 18, with a group of friends at Cornell University to pay forward the blessings and opportunities that he had received. Karim was raised by a single mother on government-aid and is the second oldest of seven children. He was unengaged in middle school and had 60 absences in seventh grade. Karim attended Long Island City High School at a time where there were over 4,000 students, a 55% high school graduate rate, and only a staggering 20% of the students graduating were prepared for college. There were several nonprofits, teachers, and mentors that were instrumental in helping him rise above his circumstances and put him on a trajectory to fulfill his potential. Karim received almost $300,000 in scholarships and merit-aid to make his college education possible. “So many of our most admirable education reformers have never attended the schools they are trying to fix. Having been blessed with an elite education and the firsthand experiences, going through the largest public school system in the U.S., I’m compelled by a sense of moral obligation to create the pathways and opportunities I received for children growing up just like me,” said Karim. His passion for educational equity and work as a social entrepreneur has granted him the title of 2017 TED Fellow. “I’m incredibly grateful. This recognition is validation that the work we’re carrying out at Practice Makes Perfect is an idea worth spreading,” shared Karim.
Founded in 2009, the TED Fellows program has 414 Fellows from 87 countries, whose talks have collectively been viewed more than 145 million times. In its eight-year history, the TED Fellows program has created a powerful, far-reaching network—made up of scientists, doctors, activists, artists, entrepreneurs, inventors, journalists and beyond—leading to many meaningful and unexpected collaborations including BRCK, the self-powered, mobile WiFi device designed in Kenya; Mappr, the data visualization platform recently acquired by Slice Technologies; and Brick x Brick, a public art performance inspired by the 2016 election that builds human “walls” against misogyny.
Once a year, the TED Fellows program opens applications to find a new class of extraordinary thinkers and doers, encouraging innovators over 18 years old to apply. Interested applicants should visit the TED Fellows program website for more information about the fellowship and to sign up to be alerted when the next round of applications opens later this year: http://www.ted.com/participate/ted-fellows-program/apply-to-be-a-ted-fellow.
About Practice Makes Perfect
Practice Makes Perfect (PMP) was founded in 2010 on the strong belief that all children—regardless of race or socioeconomic status—have an equal potential to compete intellectually in our society. PMP is a full-service summer school operator that partners with schools to provide high-quality academic summer programming. Our program utilizes an evidence-based, near-peer mentorship model that matches elementary and middle school scholars with older, high achieving mentors from their same community. The classes are led by Teaching Fellows who are placed under the guidance of an experienced teacher, resulting in a full day of academic experience that is both focused and fun. PMP believes that everyone in the community has an important role to play in ensuring that the next generation can thrive academically, and we leverage all of our stakeholders to drive academic outcomes and increase student engagement. To date, PMP has served over 2,000 students academically and created more than 400 seasonal jobs.
About the TED Fellows program
The TED Fellows program brings together young innovators from around the world and across disciplines, who display both outstanding achievement and exemplary character, to raise international awareness of their work and maximize their impact. The program offers Fellows full participation in a TED or TEDGlobal Conference, a two-day pre-conference of workshops and activities, a Fellows Retreat, ongoing professional coaching and mentoring, dedicated PR coaching and active participation in the TED community, including the global TED Fellows network. Founded in 2009, the TED Fellows program now includes 414 Fellows from 87 countries, and was named one of the top 10 Fellowships of 2016 by ProFellow.com.
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