Frequently Asked Questions

What exactly is the Ethics & Leadership Conference

Held October 31, 2022, the NCSSM Ethics & Leadership conference is a one-day event for high school students that provides the opportunity to network with other students, participate in problem solving sessions, hear from experts in ethical technology and learn about exciting new career paths. This year the theme of the conference is: Should We Hack Humanity? The conference is designed to allow for in-person participation or there is an option to participate virtually. This year's Ethics and Leadership Conference: Should We Hack Humanity? invites students to explore the intersection of ethics and technology with a significant focus on Artificial Intelligence’s role in this conversation.

Why join us for this event?

  • Network with other students, educators, and tech industry professionals

  • Participate in problem solving sessions and discussion about ethical tech

  • Hear from experts about ethical dilemmas in their fields

  • Learn about exciting career paths in tech

Where is the event?

Event will be held in the Educational Technology Complex (ETC) on the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics Durham Campus (1219 Broad Street, Durham NC 27705). The ETC is on Maryland Ave. near the Club Blvd. Intersection. Visit the NCSSM Website for a map and directions.

Is it only in-person?

No! Students can register to join in-person or virtually.

How is the Ethics & Leadership Conference different from my normal school day?

This conference is more like a field-trip. Conference sessions are meant to be enrichment opportunities, where you can learn about ethical computing and other topics not often covered during a normal school day.

What will I be doing during my sessions?

Sessions will be fun and engaging. For in-person participants, they will alternate between expert speakers and small group sessions used for brainstorming and reflection. Virtual participants will access talks given by speakers via Zoom Webinar and will have access to smaller breakout rooms and activity guides.

What is the cost?

The conference is free.

How many people can attend the conference?

There is space for 250 in-person participants and 300 virtual participants.

Who should attend?

High school students in North Carolina are welcome to attend, along with teachers and educators acting as chaperones.

Although the primary audience for the conference is high school students, teachers from many disciplines may choose to take part in the conference given its interdisciplinary nature. CTE and PLTW teachers, science teachers, and social science teachers may be particularly interested in the content.

Who is leading these sessions?

The day will be hosted by Noelle Silver, founder of AI Leadership Institute. We'll be hearing from experts in ethical computing. In-person, small group discussions will be lead by NCSSM faculty, staff, and Innovation Leaders from SparkNC. For virtual participants, you'll have access to keynote speakers' presentations via a Zoom webinar link, breakout rooms, and activity guides.

When do the sessions happen?

See the conference schedule for more details about the day.

I’m an educator attending the conference in-person. What can I expect?

In addition to the amazing events organized for students, in-person educators will have an opportunity to participate in a lunch-and-learn with Noelle Silver Russell and hear about the amazing resources available through Betabox Learning and the Ryden Program in Innovation and Leadership.

I’m an educator facilitating the conference at my school. What can I expect?

You will receive an educator’s guide 2 weeks before the conference. It will include optional pre-conference activities to teach in your classroom, all of the information necessary to facilitate the in-person conference day, and additional curriculum and lesson resources to extend your students’ learning beyond the day.

How can I find out more?

The below recording includes information about the conference speakers, the SparkNC scholarships offered to TIP districts, and more on the educator’s resources. September 15 Webinar - Passcode: KGa&EU7m

What is the COVID-19 masking policy?

NCSSM is a 'mask optional' campus but we encourage everyone attending the event in-person to safeguard the entire community by wearing a mask, particularly during in-door portions of the event.

Registration FAQs

How should I register for the in-person event?

Click on the in-person registration link and fill out the form on the registration page.

We recommend using a personal email address that you check regularly, since many schools block email from outside sources, and you may not receive information about your sessions.

How do I register to attend virtually?

Click on the registration link for virtual attendees and fill out the form on the registration page. We recommend using a personal email address that you check regularly, since many schools block email from outside sources, and you may not receive the link to your sessions.

  • Virtual participants - Students participating without a teacher or educator facilitating should register using the Virtual Conference Registration.

  • Virtual participants - Educators who will be leading their entire class (or another large group) in the conference should register ONLY themselves using the Virtual Conference Registration. Please do NOT register each student individually in order to preserve seats for other virtual participants.

I've registered. Now what?

If you registered virtually, you should have received an email from Zoom with the link to the sessions. This email should be sent you to right after registering. Just click the Zoom Meeting meeting link in that email during the keynote start time.

For in-person registration, watch your email for conference information including directions to the NCSSM Durham Campus.

How do I add the Zoom Meeting to my calendar?

Virtual participants will receive an email from Zoom after registering, there are links to add the Zoom Meeting to your calendar. The Zoom meeting is scheduled to last from 9:00 AM a.m. - 3:30 p.m. in your calendar. This meeting link will be used for all keynotes and breakout sessions.

I never received a link to the meetings? What should I do?

You should receive an email from Zoom right after registering. The email will be titled "2022 Ethics & Leadership Conference" and will come from Be sure to check your spam folder. If you did not receive an email, we recommend registering again and using a different email address to register. (Many schools block email from Zoom, so we do not recommend using your school email address to register).

Zoom FAQs (Virtual Participants)

What if I am having trouble connecting to the Zoom Meetings?

Here are some helpful guides you may want to refer to:

If you are still having trouble connecting, check with your facilitator at your school for help. If you are at home and cannot connect, feel free to contact us.

My Zoom audio or video is bad. Can I do anything?

Please use the following guidelines to improve the quality of your Zoom connection if you have issues with your video or audio.

How do I download Zoom?

When you first click on the link to join a meeting, you should be prompted to install the Zoom software to your computer if this is the first time you have used Zoom. Alternatively you can install the software by going to the Zoom download center.

My school does not allow me to download Zoom. Now what?

Some schools may not allow you to download software to your school-issued computer. You can still join the meetings using the “Join from Browser” option. This will load the Zoom web client. You are not required to install any software to use the web client, but you will have limited functionality during the meetings.

If you have access to a different computer, a tablet, or a smart phone, you may be able to join the meeting from that device instead. If you need to download the Zoom app on a different device from your school-issued computer, visit the Zoom Download Center.