Home Lifestyle UNCP students organize first-ever TEDx event

UNCP students organize first-ever TEDx event

A Forbes contributor, the owner of a global training firm and a professional actress are among the national speakers featured in the first-ever TEDx conference at UNC Pembroke on Saturday, Feb. 11.

UNCP faculty will also take the Upchurch Auditorium stage during the James A. Thomas Hall sold-out event. The talks will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will be available via live stream.

The professional speakers include Kerri Garbis, Kim Essendrup, Darrell Forte and Ivna Curi. Representing UNCP are Drs. Xinyan Shi, Calvina Ellerbe, Charles Beem and Adam Griffiths, Gordon Byrd and Mecca Terry.

Talks will range from ideas about how to get rid of fear, uncertainty, and doubt in your life to the importance of mindfulness and meditation.

The theme for the conference reflects three core tenants of the university’s mission: innovation, collaboration and scholarship. Each talk will be recorded and uploaded to the TEDx Talks YouTube, which boasts 36 million subscribers.


TEDxUNC Pembroke is an independently organized annual conference run by students –– Peace Ajirotutu, Hannah Irving and Jaelyn Wilson. The senior trio, who are members of the Maynor Honors College, were granted a TED license in 2022 and spent a year planning the event that mirrors the widely acclaimed TED Talks series.

“The planning process was long and challenging. It started with a simple idea I had. Hannah and Jaelyn helped me realize that we could do it together,” Ajirotutu.

Sponsorships began to pour in from several campus organizations. The students also partnered with local businesses.

“The creation of TEDxUNCPembroke from an idea on a PowerPoint was made possible through hard work and dedication. The skills we have learned are invaluable,” Ajirotutu. “We have learned much about accounting, designing, public relations and construction. This is great exposure for the university, and we are excited to share many of our professor’s talks with the world.”

For more information about the speakers, visit tedxuncpembroke.org.

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