Ignite and Enlighten: A New Kind of Presentation

Hello, current and prospective students! With less than two weeks left in the fall semester, it’s final project season, and I’ve seen some fantastic work so far from my cohort. One presentation style we’ve recently been exposed to is deemed “Ignite.” Presenters must prepare 20 slides which will be on screen for 15 seconds each; they have 5 minutes to “enlighten us, but make it quick!” In case you’re given the chance to present to a class in the form of your choice, here are some fast facts on ignite talks:

  1. Ignite presentations can take place at conferences. In fact, there are whole events that host ignite presentations and workshops on a variety of topics. I’ve seen some from refugees turned students, scientists, politicians, gamers, and more.
  2. Presenters don’t limit themselves to talking about one aspect of their presentation for only 15 seconds. In other words, while the slides automatically advance, the transitions between points being made by presenters can extend into other slides. This talk on helping children with autism flourish in their own way is a prime example of that.
  3. Ignite presentations are most common in the United States, but are spreading worldwide. There aren’t any Rochester events yet, but who’s to say that a topic you discuss in class might not work for a presentation like this? Audiences for these works are expansive and diverse!
  4. These presentations convey points clearly and efficiently. Activism can take on many forms, and one of the reason ignites are so effective is that they explain basic facts about certain topics while including information on actual lived experiences.
  5. The Ignite company itself is sponsored by big name corporations such as Microsoft. The format is taking off; who knows? Maybe a class presentation could turn into something viewed on a global scale!

If you’re interested in creating an ignite presentation of your own, make sure to watch some of the videos on the original website for inspiration! As always, Meliora!

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