Students Launch Initiative to Bring TEDx to Wellesley College

April 16, 2013

Organizers Yong Wei Chong Gabriel '14 and Cicia Lee '14 Invite Community Participation

TEDx Wellesley College graphic

TEDx, the subsidiary of TED, a hugely popular and successful conference platform, is set to come to Wellesley College in February 2014.

Philosophy major Yong Wei Chong Gabriel '14, and econ major Cicia Lee '14, both fans of TED talks, recently established TEDxWellesleyCollege. The mission of TEDxWellesleyCollege, in line with the TED spirit of propagating ideas worth spreading, is to bring some of the world’s most creative and inspiring leaders, thinkers, and innovators to Wellesley College and foster a lively discourse within the Wellesley community on some of the most challenging topics confronting our generation.

The theme for the 2014 conference is Consilience, inspired by the Edward O. Wilson book of the same name. It refers to a paradigm or mode of thinking that incorporates principles and concepts from different disciplines when formulating a comprehensive theory or solving a problem. The theme was chosen by Chong and Lee for its potency in stimulating intellectual discourse, relevance to policy making in a paradoxical age of rapid specialization and information excess, as well as its reflection on Wellesley's institutional values as a liberal arts college in encouraging multidisciplinary thinking.

Chong and Lee hope that the conference will be a truly inclusive event for the whole campus, and that all members of the Wellesley College community—students, alums, faculty, and staff alike—will be enthusiastic in participating in the event. Nominations for feature speakers are currently open on the TEDxWellesleyCollege website until May 10, 2013. Current students are also encouraged to apply to join the executive planning team by April 19, 2013. Auditions will be held in the fall for a limited number of student speakers as well.

About TEDx

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized. (Subject to certain rules and regulations.)

For an example, check out the recent TEDx on the theme of positive disruption, hosted by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and featuring Wellesley alumna Halimatou Hima Moussa Dioula '10.

About TED

TED is a nonprofit organization with the tagline, Ideas Worth Spreading. Started as a four-day conference in California 26 years ago, which brought together people from technology, entertainment, and design, TED has grown to support world-changing ideas with multiple initiatives. At TED, the world’s leading thinkers and doers are asked to give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes. Talks are then made available, free, at TED.com. TED speakers have included Isabel Allende, Sir Richard Branson, former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Bill Gates, Elizabeth Gilbert, Jane Goodall, Benoit Mandelbrot, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, and Philippe Starck. Two major TED events are held each year: The TED Conference takes place every spring in Long Beach, Calif. (along with a parallel conference, TEDActive, in Palm Springs), and TEDGlobal is held each summer in Edinburgh, Scotland.

TED’s media initiatives include TED.com, where new TEDTalks are posted daily; the new TED Conversations, enabling broad conversations among TED fans; and the Open Translation Project, which provides subtitles and interactive transcripts as well as the ability for any TEDTalk to be translated by volunteers worldwide.

TED has established the annual TED Prize, where exceptional individuals with a wish to change the world are given the opportunity to put their wishes into action; TEDx, which offers individuals or groups a way to host local, self-organized events around the world; and the TED Fellows program, helping world-changing innovators from around the globe to become part of the TED community and, with its help, amplify the impact of their remarkable projects and activities.

For information about TED’s upcoming conferences, visit TED.com.


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