My YTH Live Experience
April 15, 2013
I love technology. I check tech blogs hourly to see reviews of new products, games and software and to hear the latest tech gossip, and I’m always excited when a tech event is going on. I’m usually glued to my screen and live tweeting at the same time. As you probably know by now, I am also a teen who is dedicated to promoting sexuality education. So, it was natural that I was excited to go to San Francisco from April 6th to the 9th to attend YTH Live, a conference focused on youth, technology and health. I was really excited to attend because it seemed like a great fit; I’m a young person fascinated by technology and interested in health, after all!
The conference consisted of different presentations from guests from several colleges and sexual health organizations. What struck me most about the conference was the power of technology, specifically with smartphones. During one presentation, I heard that a third of U.S. teens have smartphones, and many presentations focused on the use of cell phones to promote healthier lives. Oregon Reminders, for example, sends texts, calls and e-mails to its users to remind them to get tested or take their medications. It’s also supposed to be easy to sign up for the service. The creators state that it takes less than three minutes to sign up. A healthier life for three minutes of my time? Amazing!
Another interesting session I attended was titled, “Mobile Apps for High School and College Students.” During this session, I learned about many intuitive apps available or soon-to-be available in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. The apps include Circle of 6, an app designed to help stop sexual violence and assault against women, and SmartSex, an interactive app that educates young people about sexuality.
All in all, I really had a good time at the conference. It was awesome to see that there are other people like me in the world that are fighting for and dreaming about the same things: comprehensive sex ed for all teens and innovative ways to teach it using the latest technology. I know that both myself and the teens I met on the trip won’t stop until all teens have the sex ed they deserve.