TED Talk Video Series - Student and Civic Engagement - Penn State Altoona

TED Talk Video Series

The TED Talk video series will be making a return to Penn State Altoona. This program will utilize TED Talks by Rick Warren, Magaret Heffernan, Susan Cain, Eric Liu, Mellody Hobson, and David Puttnam to stimulate conversation, help students learn more about themselves, and enhance their understanding of the world.

The TED Talk Video series will be held each Thursday from November 6 through December 18 in the Fireside Lounge of the Slep Student Center at 12 noon. Students will have the opportunity to win a book or other prizes that focus on specific TED Talks. Refreshments will also be available during session.

TED (Technology, Entertainment, & Design) is a global set of conferences owned by the private non-profit Sapling Foundation under the slogan "Ideas Worth Spreading." TED conferences and events, held all over the world, address a wide range of topics within the research and practice of science and culture, often through storytelling. Speakers are given a specific amount of time to present their ideas in the most innovative and engaging ways they can. The TED mission statement reads, "We believe passionately in the power of ideas to change attitudes, lives and ultimately, the world. So we're building here a clearinghouse that offers free knowledge and inspiration from the world's most inspired thinkers, and also a community of curious souls to engage with ideas and each other."

For more information on the program, contact Nigel Trainer at nmt134@psu.edu.

Fall 2014 Presentations

All TED Talk events will be held in the Fireside Lounge of the Slep Student Center

Margaret Heffernan

“Dare to disagree”

Wednesday, November 19

Is someone willing to step into the role of devil’s advocate? There are different ways of looking at models, statistics, and different ways of crunching the data in order to challenge a theory. Disagreeing can be a task for creating conflict around a theory, because it is only by not being able to prove that he/she is wrong, that he/she knows that he/she are right. It’s a fantastic model of collaboration; thinking partners who are willing to challenge a theory from different perspectives. I wonder how many of us have, or dare to have, such colleagues; partners who are good at conflict. Can this be viewed as thinking?

Eric Liu

“Why ordinary people need to understand power”

Thursday, December 4

It's the responsibility of people like us, people who show up for gatherings like this in person or online, in any way we can, to make civics sexy again, as sexy as it was during the American Revolution, as sexy as it was during the Civil Rights Movement. And I believe the way we make civics sexy again is to make explicitly about the teaching of power. The way we do that, I believe, is at the level of the city.

Mellody Hobson:

“Color blind or color bold”

Friday December 12

Now, race is one of those topics in America that makes people extraordinarily uncomfortable. You bring it up at a dinner party or in a workplace environment; it is literally the conversational equivalent of touching the third rail. There is shock, followed by a long silence. And even coming here today, I told some friends and colleagues that I planned to talk about race, and they warned me, they told me, don't do it, that there'd be huge risks in me talking about this topic, that people might think I'm a militant black woman and I would ruin my career. And I have to tell you, I actually for a moment was a bit afraid. Then I realized, the first step to solving any problem is to not hide from it, and the first step to any form of action is awareness. And so I decided to actually talk about race. And I decided that if I came here and shared with you some of my experiences, that maybe we could all be a little less anxious and a little bolder in our conversations about race.

Susan Cain

“The power of introverts”

Thursday, December 18

Most of us work in open plan offices, without walls, where we are subject to the constant noise and gaze of our coworkers. And when it comes to leadership, introverts are routinely passed over for leadership positions, even though introverts tend to be very careful, much less likely to take outsize risks -- which is something we might all favor nowadays. And interesting research by Adam Grant at the Wharton School has found that introverted leaders often deliver better outcomes than extroverts do, because when they are managing proactive employees, they're much more likely to let those employees run with their ideas, whereas an extrovert can, quite unwittingly, get so excited about things that they're putting their own stamp on things, and other people's ideas might not as easily then bubble up to the surface.

Spring 2015 Presentations

All TED Talk events will be held in the Fireside Lounge of the Slep Student Center

David Puttnam

“Does the media have “A duty of care”

Thursday, January 15

In this thoughtful talk, David Puttnam asks a big question about the media: Does it have a moral imperative to create informed citizens, to support democracy? His solution for ensuring media responsibility is bold, and you might not agree. But it's certainly a question worth asking...

Rick Warren

“A life of purpose”

Thursday, January 22

What's in your hand? What do you have that you've been given: talent, background, education, freedom, networks, opportunities, wealth, ideas, or creativity? What are you going to do with what you've been given? Is that the primary purpose about life? Is this what being purpose driven is all about?

Jackson Katz

“Violence against women-It’s a men’s issue”

Thursday, January 29

Domestic violence and sexual abuse are often called "women’s issues.” But in this bold, blunt talk, Jackson Katz points out that these are intrinsically men’s issues — and shows how these violent behaviors are tied to definitions of manhood. A clarion call for us all — women and men — to call out unacceptable behavior and be leaders of change.

Bryan Stevenson

“We need to talk about an injustice”

Thursday February 5

In an engaging and personal talk — with cameo appearances from his grandmother and Rosa Parks — human rights lawyer Bryan Stevenson shares some hard truths about America's justice system, starting with a massive imbalance along racial lines: a third of the country's black male population has been incarcerated at some point in their lives. These issues, which are wrapped up in America's unexamined history, are rarely talked about with this level of candor, insight and persuasiveness.