The independently organized Milwaukee segment of TEDx held their 60 For 60 event on Apr. 12, welcoming speakers Adam Hudson and Matthew Meleners.
Hudson’s presentation featured UWM students who have been applying their tech know-how to non-profit organizations that need assistance in strengthening their skills outside of the classroom. The goal of Hudson’s NonProfIT organization is to further engage undergraduates into the community. So far, it has grown from the 6 original students and 2 teams back in 2014.
“Communicate the story,” Hudson said. The main idea is to redesign new web pages for nonprofit groups, and in the end, create a stronger sense of community and responsibility.
Meuleners’s comical rendition of his youth gave a new outlook for all those considered “geeky”. He told a step-by-step way of creating medieval chainmail which he said, after 3 hours a labor and his co-workers’ help, was only a 5 by 5 patch of chainmail.
“Pathetic, I know,” he said, “but the passions that lead people to recreate medieval chainmail is the same passion that is changing the world. I am fascinated by how they obsess over their passions… If you are gonna geek, geek deep.”
Meuleners presentation centered around geeks who are “masters, makers, and missionaries.” He told the story of a local doctor who “transformed what he loved to fit his world”, which could help save children who suffer from Cerebrospinal Fluid, a disease where fluid builds up in the skull. The current procedures still leave room to be improved, but what started as a young Josh Meadow’s hobby could be used as a pressure gauge to monitor the children without having to operate.
These type of ideas are what the TEDx Milwaukee organization is trying to push in order to inspire others to help change the world for the better. Co-president Buschra, a student at UWM, said the mission of TEDx in Milwaukee is to showcase the “potential our own students have,” and to “give the opportunity [for students] to spread their ideas.”
Students who start with minute ideas can apply to have their idea’s shared at the event. Two UWM sophomores gave sixty-second speeches on their ideas, which could allow them to be featured at larger TED Talk event.
Future events will lead up to the conference on Oct. 8, which students can still apply for here.