x = independently organized TED event

Theme: On Being Human

This event occurred on
April 1, 2017
12:00pm - 5:00pm CDT
(UTC -5hrs)
Austin, Texas
United States

Human beings. We are an enigma to each other. We are an enigma to ourselves. What does it mean to be human? We all exist on the continuum between bliss and anguish on any given day. Our experiences no doubt define us and our world, creating unique and varied stories. For all of our diversity, individually and culturally, thematic threads emerge that connect us. When we share, when we listen, we come to better understand each other and ourselves, and we are given an opportunity to reshape our stories because of shared wisdom. Please join us for this year’s array of inspiring and thought-provoking talks by speakers who have been invited to share their thoughts “on being human.”

3324 Ranch Road 620 South
Austin, Texas, 78738
United States
Event type:
Youth (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Austin Stanford

Account Executive and Mentor
Mentorship has impacted Austin's life in major ways. So major, he considers it wrong to sit on the free treasure of what mentorship is and hide it from people who need it. Mentors are a constant in his life and are a perpetual influence. Those who have corrected and directed his choices and experiences have helped shape not only who he is, but even the titles of the chapters of his life. Ultimately, he wants to become that to others.

Curtis Gerstner

Curtis has 9 years of experience as a professional novelist, lab technician, historical annalist, and arithmetician. In other words, he's a professional 9th grade student with excellent experiences! He's also recently taken up tennis and theater.

Elizabeth Daves

Elizabeth Daves is a freshman at Lake Travis High School. She plays the horn in the Lake Travis Wind Ensemble and the mellophone during marching band season. Elizabeth is heavily involved in Lake Travis's AP classes program as well as the Speech and Debate Team and Computer Science.

Ellie Rose Mattoon

Ellie Rose is passionate about improving the way our community interacts with the news media. She considers herself a "Renaissance Girl" in that her hobbies are as numerous as the stars. However, the activities that take up most of her time are Model United Nations, theater, and film acting.

Emily Flores

Emily Flores is a fourteen year old student at Lake Travis High. Her passions include advocating for the disabled community, writing, and reading all genres of books. Her work has been featured in Teen Voices and Affinity Magazine.

Ethan Martin

Ethan enjoys playing the piano, especially classical music by Beethoven or Chopin. He likes to lift weights, write fiction, and edit and proofread fiction. He also enjoys researching topics that interest him, such as news, medicine, chemistry, and astronomy.

Isabella Sommers

When Isabella (Cas) was two years old, she picked up a paintbrush for the first time. After that, it was ballet slippers and a camera at three, acting at four, and a pencil with the thought of writing poetry at age five. She is currently in 10 clubs and debates with the National Speech and Debate Association.

Katie Willsey

Kaite Willsey moved to Lakeway, Texas two and a half years ago and became very involved in school spirit days, the school's musical production, volunteering, and competitive swimming. In the 9th-grade, Katie was diagnosed with a serious concussion setting her back in both her education and her swimming. As a result, Katie decided to move her passion to participating in the Speech and Debate Team and the TED-Ed Club, giving her the opportunity to work on her presentation and speech writing skills.

Lee Scheffe

Most of Lee's passions align with his love of the outdoors. He is a member of the LTHS Mountain Biking Team as well as an avid hiker. Lee is also part of the LTHS Debate Team and loves preparing for and competing in tournaments.

Luke Monshaugen

Luke's favorite subjects in school are science and math. He also competes on his middle school's Chess Puzzle team and is a the 6th-grade representative for the Student Council. Luke likes to play soccer and is a red belt with black stripe in TaeKwonDo, and also plays the violin.

Maya Obregon

When not held captive in day-to-day drudgery, Maya Obregon enjoys mountain biking, reading, and listening to music - although she weeps for anyone forced to hear her create it. Her aspirations include owning many dogs, but beyond that, superheroes draw her attention away from the nebulous future.

McCall McPherson

Co-Founder, Modern Medicine
McCall McPherson is the co-founder of the medical practice, Modern Medicine. She has the privilege of healing people for a living, and she cares deeply for her patients - they are her tribe. As much as she helps them get their lives and health back, her patients often thank her for simply treating them like a human being. She truly believes the majority of her success isn't even because of her methodologies of treatment, but actually due to her intentional tether to the fact that, moment by moment, she is treating another human being.

Nolan Weinschenk

Nolan Weinschenk is a musician, entrepreneur, activist, and quantum physics enthusiast. He believes that humans are so much more than our physical bodies alone, and that it is possible to transcend the physical world. Before you call him crazy, remember that this idea may just help you ace a test, get a job, or win the lottery.

Rebecca Bamberger

Founder and President, BAM Communications
Beck Bamberger relishes vibrant experiences and great stories. She's been to 60+ countries, sold a food tour company she created in 2011, and currently is the founder of a fast-growing tech focused public relations firm, BAM Communications. She won an Emmy in 2011 and writes for Inc., Forbes, Fast Company, and other national business media outlets. In addition, she was the youngest student ever to graduate with an MBA at the age of 19 from the University of Pittsburg. She loves huge tacos and stellar lattes, though not together.

Shannon Aguirre

Shannon has taught Latin for over a decade to the best student body in existence. She is fiercely committed to the pursuit of best practice both in theory and in real life. And in this pursuit, she has acquired an eclectic set of skills. She says, "I fail a lot ... that's why I know so much."

Organizing team


Austin, TX, United States


Austin, TX, United States
  • Koby Wheeler