07 Dec 2015

Unexpected Experience at TEDxSMU

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By Dhruv Kaushal on December 7, 2015

An opportunity to attend a TEDx conference is a great one, and I was lucky to have been selected worthy enough to attend. A day long affair of intellectual talks, open to networking people, and a plethora of decorations and food set up the stage for TEDxSMU 2015.

The day started with the two amazing and humorous hosts – Kelly Stoetzel and Rives. Both of them did a great job in running the event and keeping the attention of the audience intact even in the midst of breaks. With over 20 talks throughout the day, some discussed scientific concepts, and some the current affairs of the world. Some made us laugh, and yes, some made us cry, too. To top it all off there was good music added to this great conference.

As an attendee, a few talks completely stood out to me. One of them was given by Jessica Shortall. She discussed the dire need of giving importance to maternity leave, and the effect the current employment system has on child bearing mothers. Backed by statistics, her talk was an eye-opener not just for me but for many others in the audience as her eloquence in speech and sensitivity of the subject matter made it the first standing ovation of TEDxSMU.

As an international student at SMU, I am not new to diversity. Capturing the essence of diversity in the United States and the way it affects the decision making process both economically and socially, the talk delivered by Tracy Brown was as strong as it was humbling. Music by Trevor Douglas raised our spirits and spread an optimistic vibe around. On the flipside, learning about the struggles of cancer faced by Candy Peterson’s daughter and her entire family brought a sense of gratuity for the blessed life that we possess.

It wasn’t all mature and experienced people; TEDxSMU 2015 had young blood raising the bar high. With Miranda Wang & Jeanny Yao informing us of their breakthrough technology in aquatic life and its nutrition, it was a day packed with knowledge and ideas worth spreading, truly in terms of Technology, Entertainment & Design.


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