Prepare to get schooled by C2’s “7 Under 17”

C2 team
Prepare to get schooled by C2’s “7 under 17” | C2 Stories

They are change-makers and action-takers: seven exceptional young folks who are each doing extraordinary and inspiring things in the service of their fellow human beings.

Innovative, creative, passionate (and smarter than many of the rest of us are on our best days), these “7 Under 17” are the leaders of tomorrow, and we’re proud to announce that they’ll be sharing their own stories and unique perspectives onstage at C2 Montréal 2019.

We invite you to meet them…


Isabella Grandic, Speaker at C2 Montréal 2019


Isabella Grandic: The future of food maker

Innovator, The Knowledge Society

Age: 15 years old

Website: Medium profile

Isabella Grandic is on a mission to disrupt the process of food production. Passionate about global sustainability and stopping the effects of climate change by using emerging tech, this cellular agriculture researcher is breaking food down to its genetics and discovering new processes for lab-grown meat, dairy and eggs. Isabella’s goal is to make synthetic animal products available to everyone by 2025.

Additionally, Isabella is an innovator at The Knowledge Society accelerator programme and was recently nominated as one of North America’s “Top Innovators to Watch.”


Samaira Mehta, Speaker at C2 Montréal 2019


Samaira Mehta: The up-and-coming coder

Kid entrepreneur, CEO CoderBunnyz

Age: 10 years old

Website: CoderBunnyz

Samaira Mehta invented a STEM coding board game, CoderBunnyz, at the age of seven with the goal of teaching coding to kids aged four to 104 while also helping bridge the gender gap in technology. She’s led more than 75 workshops with her board game in Silicon Valley, including at Google, Microsoft, Intel, libraries and schools, teaching thousands of kids how to code. She also started an initiative to teach coding to underrepresented girls.

Last summer, Samaira invented the world’s first-ever AI board game, CoderMindz. Her goal is to help one billion kids gain access to coding tools by the time she goes to college, and she’s well on her way with her 1 Billion Kids Can Code initiative. One of her proudest moments was receiving an encouraging letter from former first lady Michelle Obama.


Jamie Margolin, Speaker at C2 Montréal 2019


Jamie Margolin: The climate activist

Founder and Co-Executive Director, Zero Hour

Age: 17 years old

Website: Zero Hour

At 14-years-old, Jamie Margolin was frustrated by climate inaction of elected officials and started organizing. Today, her impossible-to-ignore, youth-led movement and resource for budding activists, Zero Hour, is on a mission to draw the voices of diverse youth into conversations around climate change as they stage massive youth climate marches internationally. Zero Hour is majority run by young women of colour, and were featured in The New York Times.

Jamie is also one of 13 plaintiffs suing her home state of Washington for not sufficiently protecting the climate. She is also the subject of the documentary How to build a climate movement before your 17th birthday, and her debut nonfiction book, Youth to Power, will be released worldwide in 2020.


Ayaan Esmail, Speaker at C2 Montréal 2019


Ayaan Esmail: The nanotech enthusiast

Co-Founder, Genis & Innovator, The Knowledge Society (TKS)

Age: 14 years old

Website: Personal portfolio

Ayaan Esmail is a gene analyzer, nanotechnology and genomics enthusiast and the co-founder of Genis, a health-tech startup aimed at understanding human biomarkers in order to create proactive treatments that can diagnose diseases and different types of cancers.

In the past, he has worked on developing a novel method for gene sequencing that is much cheaper and faster than current methods, allowing people to gain access to personalized medicine and more effective treatments. Ayaan has also recently been able to shape DNA into a 3D DNA Icosahedron, allowing the delivery of cancer medications to be more precise and effective than current methods.


Samarth Athreya, Speaker at C2 Montréal 2019


Samarth Athreya: The health-tech entrepreneur

Co-Founder, Genis & Innovator, The Knowledge Society

Age: 15 years old


Samarth Athreya — Co-Founder of Genis, a health-tech startup aimed at understanding human biomarkers — has his attention focused on human longevity and nanotechnology. In addition to being well-travelled in the worlds of blockchain, machine learning and web design, he is very passionate about the aging cycle and has experimented with nanotechnology-based applications in an attempt to reverse it.

Samarth is currently working on developing a proactive healthcare system with his friend, and fellow Genis Co-Founder and C2 Montréal 2019 speaker, Ayaan Esmail. They are leveraging machine learning and human longevity-based datasets for early stage detection and prevention. Samarth is also a Certified Blockchain Developer.


Laura Bourbeau, Speaker at C2 Montréal 2019


Laura Bourbeau: The anti-bullying author


Age: 14 years old

Website: @laurabourbeauauteure

Laura Bourbeau is a Quebec author and recent Mammouth Gala prize winner who recently published her anti-bullying comic book “Millie.” Laura was inspired by Fanny Britt’s comic strip Jane, the Fox and Me, and spent much of last summer alongside a graphic designer reworking the 245 illustrations in her book. Millie, which tells the story of a sixth-grader who overcomes bullying by a classmate, is meant for students aged 8-13, and Laura hopes that it can make a difference in the lives of her readers.

The comic book took her a year to create. She originally drew it for fun in her spare time, only deciding to explore publishing options after it was finished.


Shagun Maheshwari, Speaker at C2 Montréal 2019


Shagun Maheshwari: The AI activator

Innovator, The Knowledge Society

Age: 16 years old

Website: Some of her work on Medium

Shagun Maheshwari is a machine learning developer passionate about leveraging artificial intelligence for use in a multitude of applications. She recently spoke at BETT, a British education and technology conference, about how her innovative use of AI helped her to calculate the probability of a person being diagnosed with cancer as well as improved cancer detection through the use of human genome data.

Shagun’s use of AI isn’t limited to the medical field, as it has also helped her create artificial neural networks that can accurately predict churn rates at financial institutions as well as develop AI models that improve object detection in computer vision systems. She has recently delved deeper into the field of computational biology as she hopes to leverage her programming and AI knowledge to make waves in that space.


The “7 Under 17” will be sprinkled throughout the regular speaker programming at C2 Montréal, May 22-24. Don’t miss out on your chance to hear what they have to say — get your pass now.

You can check out the rest of the speaker roster (so far) here, and be sure to check back regularly — there are more exciting announcements on the way.

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