Students to host “TEDxUChicago” event on April 17
University of Chicago students will host an ambitious TEDx speaker event on April 17, which will bring together provocative thinkers from UChicago and around the world to address topics ranging from the future of cybernetics to drug legalization.
The daylong event at Mandel Hall and the adjoining Reynolds Club, titled “Reinventing the Life of the Mind,” was independently organized by UChicago students, with guidance and branding assistance from the popular TED series of idea-oriented events and web videos. Speakers will follow the traditional TED format of concise and engaging 18-minute lectures, with two sets of presentations in the morning and two in the afternoon. The event also will include entertainment by campus dancers, a cappella singers and a vocal beatbox performer.
A key feature of any TED event is the audience of public-minded intellectuals who typically attend and strike up informed conversations during the breaks between talks. The organizers of TEDxUChicago hope to create a coffeehouse-like atmosphere by opening the entire Reynolds Club to attendees, with refreshments served throughout the day.
“We’ll be drawing upon the University of Chicago’s intellectual tradition and TED’s unique philosophy to bring together unique, insightful, intriguing and revolutionary perspectives to one electrifying event in Mandel Hall,” said Pedro Sanchez de Lozada, a student organizer and director of marketing for the event.
Speakers will include:
- Cybernetics researcher Kevin Warwick from the University of Reading in England, who will speak on “The Last Remaining Hurdles to Cyborg Technology”
- James Leitzel, co-chair of the University of Chicago’s public policy department, whose talk is titled “Re-legalizing Drugs”
- Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada, former president of Bolivia, who will talk about “The Cornerstone of Democracy”
- UChicago paleontologist Paul Sereno, who will present “Dinosaurs on Drifting Continents”
- Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, known for developing the concept of “flow,” in which people doing a creative activity lose their sense of time
- UChicago developmental psychologist Susan Goldin-Meadow, who will speak on “What Our Hands Can Tell Us About Our Minds”
- UChicago student Bruno Cabral, who won the student competition to present at TEDxUChicago, will present “The Life of the Mind Lived Through Noise”
Performers will include UChicago hip-hop dance group PhiNix Dance Crew, beatbox performer and second-year economics major Michael Wang, and the UChicago a cappella group Voices In Your Head.
Tickets for the event are available through TEDxUChicago.com. General admission tickets are $30, or $20 for students with a valid UChicago ID. VIP tickets costing $55 are available, and provide priority seating, access to a VIP lounge, and a lunch and reception with event speakers. Attendee registration at the event will begin at 8:15 a.m., with the first speaker scheduled for 9 a.m.
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