TEDxBinghamtonUniversity recently announced their 2023 speaker lineup alongside a new theme — ”Unleash Radiance.”
BU has invited five professional speakers and one undergraduate student from across the United States and BU’s campus to present their ideas at this year’s TEDx. TEDx — an expansion of nonprofit organization TED — is “a local gathering where live TED-like talks and performances are shared with the community,” according to the TED website. TEDx differs from TED talks in that those involved have TED licenses to instead create self-reliant events.
The event is independently planned and coordinated by communities, so the content and design of each are unique. Called “Unleash Radiance,” TEDx will be on Sunday, March 19, at the Osterhout Concert Theater in the Anderson Center.
According to TED, The TEDx format is built to spark conversation. Each speaker is barred from promoting any agenda that is related to religion, politics or commercial purposes and have 18 minutes to speak on idea-focused topics.
Paige Bagley, the director of content for TEDxBU and a sophomore majoring in biology, explained the reasoning behind the name of the event.
“Despite our speaker lineup spanning vastly different fields, we found that each of our speakers are unleashing the full potential behind their communities and making whatever it is that they know best, even better,” Bagley said. “Whether that be making efforts to make our patriarchal culture more inclusive, making tech spaces more diverse or discovering new ways to make traditional cultural dishes more sustainable, they are leaders in their respective communities in the way they challenge the status quo and make improvements for the people who come after them in a way that honors those that came before.”
TEDx was first established at BU in 2010 as TEDxBU, and since then, has had 12 annual conferences with five to seven speakers each year.
Bagley explained that the event-planning process began in the late spring semester of 2022, when the current director team was finalized. The team would meet regularly over the summer, fall and spring to put together and assemble the TEDx event. She expressed excitement about presenting what they all had put together.
The five professional speakers who will participate are Sherrell Dorsey, an entrepreneur and journalist, Priyanka Naik, a sustainability chef, Cornelia Brandfield-Harvey, a Title IX litigator and Jason Richberg, a member of the Suffolk county Legislature. The alumni speaker will be Shantay Carter, a nurse and mentor who graduated in 2000. The undergraduate student speaker will be Caitlyn Archibald, a freshman double-majoring in biochemistry and history.
Bagley shared how speakers were chosen for the event.
“We worked hard in curating a harmonious and complementary speaker lineup,” Bagley said. “This consisted of a two-part process of each director finding speakers we liked, pitching them to the team [and] voting on sending them an invitation or not. Then, we began our student speaker search, which took place in two stages — first, a written application, followed by an in-person pitch and interview.”
Isabella Lennon, a freshman majoring in psychology, reacted positively when learning of the event.
“I think it’s a great idea,” Lennon said. “I think it’s a good place for students to talk about their passions and see how you can pursue them.”
Devan Bade, a sophomore majoring in electrical engineering, didn’t know much about TEDx, but hoped to see the event return in future years.
“I think we should continue doing [TEDxBU] if it’s a popular thing,” Devan said.
Tickets cost $10 and can be bought at the University Union, Tillman Lobby from Monday to Thursday at 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., through Thursday, March 24