by Jack E. George
Tijuana Innovadora 2012 Lures Nearly A Million People
Just a few weeks ago, plans were still underway for the Tijuana Innovadora 2012. It closed on October 21, after presenting outstanding speakers, innovators, workshops, and many other programs that nearly a million people were able to enjoy. The co-founder and president, Jose Galicot, was asked what were the lessons of the event. He concisely summed it up by saying, “That we have to believe in ourselves. That we have the knowledge to become ‘makers’ not just ‘assemblers’.”
Tijuana Innovadora offered a great amount of inspiration and hope to everyone who attended, particularly to the young people, the future leaders of Mexico. Galicot said that the program left a great, positive impact on the students. He said that 198,561 students, from elementary to university level, were able to visit the conference. He concluded by saying, “We have planted in them a tiny seed of what is possible.”
The 2012 conference was divided into three major themes: Creativity, Industrial, and Humanities. One of the original goals of the conference was to show people that Tijuana is a vital, unique, and innovative city. There is no doubt that this goal was achieved and exceeded.
It was no surprise that the gala dinner at the Country Club, on opening night, offered certain electricity which would cause the conference to surge during the following 10 days. Aside from the hundreds of guests who attended the event, Tijuana was proud to hear from Felipe Calderon, the President of Mexico.
There were many special moments to remember from the event. One of these was the huge Caesar Salad, created for a Saturday afternoon serving. Culinary students, following the recipe created in 1926 by Cesar Cardini, at his downtown Tijuana restaurant, tossed 242 pounds of lettuce to serve the 1500 guests. Another special moment was when Apple co-founder; Steve Wozniak explained how he would like to develop a computer whose chips operate on light instead of electricity. He said this would make computing much faster without using much power. Another speaker, Ada Yonath, a Nobel Prize winning chemist, spoke about her work on the structure of ribosomes, a catalyst that form proteins. During her presentation she said she would like to see people live longer, in the future, than they do today. She said in order to do this, that we must control disease.
This year there were several ‘firsts.’ This included a Culinary Battle and InnovaModa fashion show. There were also 74 different workshops which covered a variety of topics. They proved to be very popular with 14,800 people attending. The variety of culture events brought in 24,590 participants.
Tijuana Innovadora, after a very successful 11-day run, had a spectacular closing. There was a jubilant celebration Sunday evening that brought out thousands of people who celebrated the success by dancing in the city’s streets. The conference definitely added a new star next to the name of ‘Tijuana.’
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