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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


TEDxUofA promises to delve into “uncharted” territory


The University of Arizona is kicking off its first year of TEDxUofA with a conference that will explore “uncharted” themes on Friday, Feb. 16.

Starting at 3 p.m. in Crowder Hall, the event will feature seven speakers with topics ranging from religion and spirituality to white privilege to the role of amplified intelligence in sustainable food production. 

“Our conference is designed to educate, entertain and enlighten our audience,” said student and TEDxUofA Director of Logistics Anthony Middleton. “We want our audience to open their minds and tap into the uncharted part of themselves. Some of our speakers’ topics can be considered controversial, which in my opinion, creates a great conversation and an excellent TEDx conference.”

Most known for their motto, “ideas worth spreading,” TED (Technology Entertainment Design) is a nonprofit media organization that distributes online talks for free public use. Under this system, many independently organized TED events, denoted TEDx, have been created by entities around the U.S. and Canada. 

          RELATED: Q&A: UA Faculty Highlight: 2018 TED Fellow Dr. Burçin Mutlu-Pakdil

With the help of students from Innovate UA, a program housed in the McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship, TEDxUofA aims to bring a TED-like experience to the campus community and “showcase the most fascinating thinkers, dreamers and doers that come from the Zona family.”

The seven speakers for this particular event are all faculty or staff members at the UA and were chosen from a pool of 30 candidates. 

They include Jess Kapp, senior lecturer and associate department head of geosciences; Sherard Robbins, assistant dean of students; Joel Cuello, professor in agricultural-biosystems engineering; Caleb Warren, assistant professor of marketing; Hester Oberman, lecturer in religious studies and classics; Nolan Cabrera, associate professor in the Center for the Study of Higher Education; and Jonathan Bean, assistant professor in the school of architecture. 

“Anyone coming to this event will leave with a newfound feeling of self-respect,” Middleton said. “Through our event, we hope to bring an understanding of cultural differences, futuristic technology and to even show our audience that comic books can be fun while at the same time educational.”

Tickets for this TEDx conference are still available and can be purchased through TEDxUofA at $20 for the general public and $10 for students. In partnership with Adobe, TEDxUofA will also host a number of Adobe workshops throughout the semester. Visit the event Facebook page for more information.  

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