Born in New Jersey to Colombian parents, spent the second half of my life in Florida, and then became a student at Virginia Tech. My major is Business Information Technology, and I don't think it could have come at a better time when technology is fueling so much of our life and our work right now. I'm the co-founder of TEDxVirginiaTech, and I've met so many new people along the way because of it. I've begun to think about entrepreneurship in a new way and I've become inspired by people's efforts to make a difference.
An idea worth spreading
I miss the days of the arcades, but not the simple play-for-ticket games. Today's games focus on either sitting at your computer or TV, talking to others through a microphone. Sometimes, you're stuck in your own world playing a game on your phone or tablet. The days of being there with another person playing the same game aren't there like they used to be anymore. I'd like to see that communal experience of the arcade brought back someday. Maybe it doesn't have to be arcade games, but it should be something where we can all get back together and hear everyone's screams, hands-in-the-air motions, and settling tests of skill face-to-face.
I'm passionate about
Learning about the latest technologies and how they will affect us in the future. Exploring the world beyond our neighborhoods. Making the world a more helpful place, one person at a time.
Talk to me about
A book I should be reading. An app that will make my life easier. A new technology that more people should know about. A lot of things.
People don't know I'm good at
Drumming on the desk with my hands (and occasionally doing a bit of beatboxing if I get carried away). Taking well-composed Instagram photos (@themauricio). Writing at length about certain things.
My TED story
I was sitting around watching TEDTalks in my spare time when I thought to myself, "I want to attend one of these." Of course, with Virginia Tech being so far away from most major cities, it didn't seem there were any in the southwest Virginia area. So, I thought to myself: I go to a major research university. We have our own students, faculty members, and alumni with stories to share. We'll make one ourselves! Along with the help of Dr. Eddie Watson (a former faculty member who has since moved on to the University of Georgia), we reached out to people we knew to create an 18-person steering committee for the first TEDxVirginiaTech conference in November 2012. And today, it's still going strong!