TEDxStLawrenceU 2016: In Pursuit of Harmony

Karim Creary is a senior at St. Lawrence University, originally from Bermuda, who knows the significance of walking a couple miles in someone else’s shoes, which can be really important when your home island is about a mile wide. Karim explores the importance of seeing the world from another person’s perspective, specifically someone with whom you don’t agree. 

Rutendo Chabikwa, a senior at St. Lawrence University originally from Zimbabwe, believes that storytelling helps to connect with the world and people around us. She uses spoken word to highlight key moments of her life journey. 

Where we come from plays a big part of who we are as a person -- our hometown, our neighborhood, our family -- each has its own set of influences on our identity. They make us unique. Anabel Encarnación, a senior at St. Lawrence University, talks about embracing her black identity, starting with the label of the “Afro Hyphen.”

Adam Hill is Assistant Professor of Chemistry at St. Lawrence University, where he teaches about the chemistry of metals. In his talk he explains the benefits of artificial photosynthesis – developing man-made materials that mimic the behavior of plants – including converting solar energy into chemical fuels.

When you think of home, a few things may come to mind - family, pets, holidays, and family dinners at the table together. Lauren Liebhaber, a St. Lawrence University alumna, Class of 2012, who works as a professional writer and photographer, shares her personal story about the social dynamics around her family table.

There are times in life when you experience a crisis and you desperately need others by your side. What is that that helps you the most in a very tough moment? Deena McCullough, St. Lawrence University alumna and former president of the Alumni Executive Council, advocates for an act of generosity. 

Remember when, as a young student, you asked, “Why do I need math and statistics? When will I ever use it outside of school?” Jeffrey McLean, a postdoctoral fellow of Mathematics, Computer science and Statistics at St. Lawrence University, shares the importance of statistical literacy – of building the tools to interpret data on your own and tell the data’s story rather than only believing others’ interpretations of the data.

Do you consider yourself an extrovert, introvert, or ambivert? Abigail Smith, a sophomore at St. Lawrence University, is afraid of public speaking. But you’d never know it by her performance in this talk about what it is like for shy and introverted people to adapt in gregarious social situations. 

We all know someone who has that “other” person in her life. You think of them as a pair; you don't think of one without the other. Alyssa Stahrr, a sophomore at St. Lawrence University, explains the struggle of getting others to recognize your individuality when you have an identical twin sister.

A personal crisis can affect many aspects of our lives, including forcing us to take a bold look at the norms and expectations that society has imposed upon us. Hannah Van Sickle, a St. Lawrence University alumna, Class of 1996, shares her journey of challenging the authenticity of an individual under a press of societal roles, and of shedding those conventions to be her true self.

Speakers | 2018

"The Hero's Journey"
"On Bullshitting Ourselves"
"On Passion"
"Believe You Me: How the Scientific Method Might Change Your Mind"
"What's Your Name?"
"Let's Talk About Sex: The Reality of the Sexual Pleasure Disparity"
"Just Eat More"
"Why you should take a risk to break down pre-existing social institutions"

Speakers | 2016

"Am I being a jerk?"
“When Life Serves You Curve Balls”
“The Afro-Hyphen: Understanding Black Identities”
“Artificial Photosynthesis”
“The Need for Statistical Literacy”
“Harmony’s Seat at the Table”
“Finding Your Voice in an Extroverted Society”
"An Act of Generosity"
“Sixty Seconds Apart”
“Shedding Conventions at Mid-life”
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Photos courtesy of St. Lawrence University