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December 04, 2020 Friday 08:49:08 PM IST

Meet Gitanjali Rao, TIME's First-Ever Kid of The Year 2020

International Edu News

"Don’t try to fix every problem, just focus on one that excites you. If I can do it, anybody can do it."These are the inspiring words of 15 years old Gitanjali Rao, who has been selected as TIME’s first-ever Kid of the Year. In a virtual conversation with actor and nd activist Angelina Jolie, Gitanjali explained her success mantra as “Observe, brainstorm, research, build and communicate.” Also, she shared another wonderful message during the conversation that, "I don’t look like your typical scientist. Everything I see on TV is that it’s an older, usually white man as a scientist. It’s weird to me that it was almost like people had assigned roles, regarding like their gender, their age, the colour of their skin. My goal has really shifted not only from creating my own devices to solve the world’s problems, but inspiring others to do the same as well. Because, from personal experience, it’s not easy when you don’t see anyone else like you. So I really want to put out that message: If I can do it, you can do it, and anyone can do it."

At this young age, Gitanjali has done astonishing work using technology to tackle issues ranging from contaminated drinking water to opioid addiction and cyberbullying, and about her mission to create a global community of young innovators to solve problems the world over. 

In partnership with Nickelodeon, this year TIME magazine selected five Kid of the Year finalists from a field of more than 5,000 Americans, ages 8 to 16. According to TIME, the finalists have already achieved: positive impact, in all sizes. Tyler Gordon (14), Jordan Reeves (14), Bellen Woodard (10) and Ian McKenna (16) are the other finalists.