The Orlando Science Center’s Darden Theater became a site for big ideas and bold vision on Saturday, November 13 during the first TEDx Orlando Conference. A local, self-organized division of TED, TEDx brings people together to share a TED-like experience through monthly meetings and conferences.
In the spirit of ideas worth sharing, the Orlando members created the conference to present live speakers that spark deep discussion and connection for TEDx members and the Orlando community. The conference coordinated a line-up of fascinating presentations by some of Orlando’s cutting-edge thinkers including Crummer Executive-in-Residence Allen H. Kupetz and three Rollins faculty members – Associate Professor of International Business Marc Sardy, Associate Professor of History Julian Chambliss and Associate Professor of Art Rachel Simmons.
Kupetz spoke about his work with the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities, an organization offering experiential training in entrepreneurship and small business management to post-9/11 veterans. Sardy inspired the crowd with his message of how cinema can be used as a powerful tool for cultivating peace and connectivity. Since 2005, he’s worked with Orlando’s Global Peace Festival in order to realize this vision.
Chambliss gave an engaging presentation about the role of the comic book superhero not only in our media, but in our culture as a whole. Finally, the event concluded with Simmons who spoke passionately about how art can be used to raise awareness and appreciation for environmental issues such as climate change, marine pollution and ecotourism.
Other speakers included award-winning cinematographer James Neihouse, internationally recognized astrophysicist and inventor Hakeem M. Oluseyi, and artist Sharon L. Butler.
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