IDEAS Top 12 of 2012
1. UN Accreditation + Rio+20 + Presented at WYC/UN Youth Blast+20
In May of 2012, IDEAS For Us was honored with official accreditation as a NGO (Non-Government Organization) by the United Nations. Due to this honor, the IDEAS Movement has an open invitation to attend discussions on the global stage and contribute our suggestions and advice. In June, three IDEAS members — Christopher Stampar, Clayton Ferarra, Chris Castro and Nick Stampar — attended the Rio +20 Conference on Sustainable Development held in Rio de Janeiro Brazil as well as the UN Youth Blast +20 to represent the United States. IDEAS For U.N. formed in the Fall of 2012 to stream line global communication and sustainability issues. They soon formed ‘IDEAS For UN’ to connect the IDEAS movement to the international discussions on sustainable development and climate change for years to come.
2. TEDx Keynote: IDEAS For Biomimicry: How organizations can learn from Nature
IDEAS co-founder, Chris Castro, gave the first TED Talk discussing the IDEAS Movement this October to a packed house in a historic theater in Winter Garden, Florida. The 12-minute lecture is available on YouTube and on the official TEDx Orlando website. The TED Talk introduced the concept of using biomimicry to help organizations behave more like an organism.
3. Global Expansion of IDEAS around the World
Since IDEAS was started in the United States in 2008, most of our chapter growth has organically happened there in K-12 schools and Universities. This all changed in 2012. With our new acceptance by the United Nations, IDEAS had their first chance to travel abroad and freely offer our assistance and help to the youth of other nations wanting to get involved with sustainability issues. The IDEAS Movement has now spread to Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Europe and South America totaling over 15 international chapters. In addition, Christopher Stampar, has become our 1st ever International Director, working to expand our movement and best practices to countries around the World.
4. Greenwaves III – A Sustainable Music & Arts Festival
The third ever Greenwaves event was thrown at the University of Central Florida this year and over 7,000 students turned out! The electronic music themed event featured a Green Carnival run by the UCF IDEAS Chapter and other on campus groups. The event showcased electric vehicles (including the beautiful Fisker Karma Hybrid Electric Vehicle), bike turbines and a revolutionary dance floor that generates electricity when danced on. IDEAS Leader and Professional, Julian Belilty, was an integral part of involving IDEAS and making Greenwaves III happen in 2012.
5. Off The Grid breaks the World Record
In June, IDEAS Professional, Terry Hershner, made world history when he traveled from Orlando, Florida to Manchester, Tennessee on an all-electric motorcycle. The three-day trip marked the farthest distance anyone had ever gone on an all-electric Motorcycle in the world until… Terry Hershner did it again but this time went from Orlando to California! As an engineer, Terry built the bike up from a basic electric model by outfitting it with extra batteries; duel charging ports and a whole lot more torque. Lightning fast, efficient and after 13,000 miles Terry says he has only purchased $3.00 in electricity – Now that’s some serious “Miles to the Gallon”!
6. IDEAS gets accepted Clinton Global Initiative University (CGIU)
For the third year in arrow, IDEAS members have been accepted to the Clinton Global Initiative University. This year, 2 emerging UCF chapter leaders – Christina Bechtold and Stephanie Valderrama – were accepted for their innovative “Upcycling” initiative, showing youth how we could raise environmental awareness by turning trash into usable products. Way to represent!
7. Kill-A-Watt Energy Challenge expands to the University of Michigan (UM)
In Fall 2012, IDEAS expanded to the University of Michigan (UM) by establishing a partnership with the ‘Kill-A-Watt UM’ organization, established and inspired from the IDEAS Kill-A-Watt initiatives at UCF and FIU. For the 2nd year, students at UM saw savings of up to 30% in their dorms compared to the baseline and hosted several educational workshops, including a ‘Do IT In The Dark’ events and a Lightbulb exchanged to switch incandescent to fluorescent! Props gos out to Lexi Tarrigan, Kaitlyn Leffert, Kelsey Tremberth, Rebecca Gueriero and the Kill-A-Watt UM team!
8. IDEAS Northern Region Office Opens Doors!
IDEAS began in Central Florida in 2008. Since then, the spreading largely by word of mouth, the density of IDEAS chapters has been in the Southeastern United States. This year, we expanded into the Northeastern United States and even opened our first Northern Regional Office led by Jacob Robison, a leader at Binghamton University in New York.
9. IDEAS Summit 2012 / Florida Youth Congress 2012
In June, IDEAS held the first ever IDEAS Summit in which over 50 members of the various IDEAS Chapters came together in St. Petersburg, Florida for a day of workshops, meetings and a banquet. This event was open to anyone in the IDEAS Movement and it coincided with the Florida Wildlife Federation’s 75th anniversary. In addition, Governor Bob Graham joined IDEAS For Us for our Board of Directors meeting to discuss potential partnerships with FCC in the future.
10. Best New Initiative: ‘The IDEAS Tree’ by Coral Reef High School
Coral Reef High School in Miami, Florida was the establishment of IDEAS’ first K-12 school chapter. Throughout the year, the CRHS team hosted a number of clean-ups, educational events, movie screenings and even an Eco-Fashion Show in partnership with the Ecology Club. For the Fall 2012 semester, CRHS also started “The IDEAS Tree”; a school-wide campaign to engage students in all grades in pledging and committing to sustainability.
11. OVER 10,000+ Fans on Facebook
By the first week of December, IDEAS passed a milestone in the digital realm of social media. We reached 10,000 fans on Facebook! Social media is fantastic for spreading photos, initiatives, information and ideas quickly around the World for free. Hopefully this year, we will see even more friends and allies around the world join the IDEAS Movement!
12. IDEAS joins the ‘Green Pod’ at Bonnaroo 2012
This Summer IDEAS went to Bonnaroo and officially became a permanent part of the “Green Pod”. For years Bonnaroo has been the premiere music festival for College age students around the United States. Because sustainability is such an important issue for everyone in the world, Bonnaroo created an eco-fair called Green Pod. 2012 marks the first year that the IDEAS Movement became a permanent part of the music festival.