On Tuesday March 23, 2016 Valparaiso University held their inaugural TEDx event. Twenty students and faculty members worked hard on putting the event together. There were three sessions all together. Nine different speakers talked during the sessions, all from the Indiana area. Each speaker brought a unique aspect to the event. How Public Servants Can Re-Engage the Public, The Power of EQ and IQ,and Fundamentals & Innovation were just some of the many topics the speakers talked about. Speakers included Elyse Smith, Karen Freeman-Wilson, Mac McElhaney, Amanda Zelechoski, Nathan Young, Robert Ordway, Anton Lewis, Steve Zelechoski, and Tom Cedel. After each session there networking breaks for people to get a chance to interacting with fellow attendees and also the speakers.
Speaking with the chairman of marketing, Eric Kurbyun, he had two ideas he wanted people to take away from TEDx. The first being “Don’t ever stop learning because that’s what this whole thing is about, you learn a little bit about something that you may have never learned about before.” Also the idea of keeping an open mind. TEDx is there to bring people together through what they call “The Power of &.” The leadership team hopes for TEDx to be an annual event at the University. Leandro Jaime, the chairman for sponsorship and finance, hopes future events bring in a wider audience. Jaime also hopes that future TEDx happenings will “draw in speakers outside of the states, outside of northwestern Indiana.’” He hopes that next year they will be able to have small events leading up to the main one. Both Kurbyun and Jaime appeared to be honored to be part of the initial one.