x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Catalysts in Context

This event occurred on
April 9, 2017
9:30am - 4:30pm EDT
(UTC -4hrs)
Storrs, Connecticut
United States

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University of Connecticut
Storrs, Connecticut, 06269
United States
Event type:
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Barbara Gurr

Dr. Barbara Gurr is an Associate Professor in Residence with the Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program at the University of Connecticut. She is the author of Reproductive Justice: The Politics of Healthcare for Native American Women (Rutgers University Press 2015) and the editor of Race, Gender and Sexuality in Post-Apocalyptic TV and Film (Palgrave MacMillan 2015). She has recently completed a comprehensive examination of resources available for transgender and gender-nonconforming students on the UConn, Storrs campus and is currently working on two projects: an interdisciplinary, multi-authored “call and response” to Mad Max Fury Road and an examination of justice and potentiality

Daniel Hanley

My name is Daniel Hanley. I graduated from the University of Connecticut in 2012 with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Business. I am the first person in my family to graduate from college and take great pride in my skepticism, passion for learning and acquiring knowledge. Returning to the University of Connecticut as a law student, my primary interests are antitrust and economics. I actively blog to advocate for expansive antitrust policies and to discuss current political issues In my short life, I have realized the only way to succeed is to have an insatiable appetite for learning, conduct constant self-reflection for personal improvement, listen to others while acting decisively, and persistently build deep relationships with people

Jonathan Trump

Jonathan Trump is an Assistant Professor in Astronomy in the UConn Physics department. His research focuses on supermassive black holes: how they form at cosmic dawn, and grow within galaxies from cosmic high noon to the present. He has played key roles in the two of the largest Hubble Space Telescope surveys: COSMOS and CANDELS. He was educated at Penn State (BS) and the University of Arizona (PhD), and was also a UC Santa Cruz postdoc and a NASA Hubble Fellow before joining the faculty at UConn. Outside of academia, he enjoys fatherhood, brewing beer, and hunting.

Joshua Abreu

Joshua Abreu is a doctoral student in the Department of Educational Leadership at the University of Connecticut. Joshua’s research interest is on intersecting identities and its influence on Criminal Justice education--specifically on the teaching and learning of institutionalized racism, sexism, police conduct and other criminal justice issues. Joshua worked as a sworn police officer in New Hampshire and then as a social worker for Massachusetts’ Department of Children and Families. Later, he became a founding member of the nationally-recognized Student Success Center at Northern Essex Community College, where he worked as a Retention Specialist and co-chair of the college’s Culture and Equity Committee.

Lori Fomenko

Lori Fomenko is an Environmental Engineering PhD student at the University of Connecticut. As a world traveler and global citizen, she aspires to engage people from all backgrounds in discussions about global issues and international relations. She lives by the mottos, “If you don’t know, go” and “If you can dream it, you can do it.” Her passion for engineering and international development has led to her involvement in post-earthquake infrastructure project proposals in Nepal, as well as solar energy and water resource initiatives in Sub-Saharan Africa. She is a strong proponent for access to education, empowerment of women and effective communication across borders. She recently attended the UN Climate Talks in Marrakesh, and is a co-founder of the scientific media outlet, ClimaMedia. She has also co-authored technical research papers on regional climate modeling and extreme recurrent droughts over South America.

Marissa Piccolo

Marissa believes more women are needed in politics to create a healthier political climate, get things done, and help empower all those historically marginalized to dream big, share their voices and create a true representative democracy. Her background on women in politics comes from both research and personal experience. She has collected and analyzed data on state legislative races across the country to determine which strategic environments are best for female political success. She began formally studying women in politics as a Mount Vernon Leadership Fellow, mentored by staff at EMILY’s List and consulting with other leaders in the DC area. Marissa has been selected as a UK Fulbright Scholar and will spend next year at Queens’ University Belfast earning a Masters in Legislative Studies, adding an international perspective to her research and after which she will attend law school.

Nandhana Sajeev

Nanee Sajeev is a community organizer, spoken word poet and teaching artist. She has competed at CUPSI 2017, the collegiate national level competition for spoken word poetry. She also coaches Connetic Word, Connecticut’s internationally recognized youth poetry team. She has worked and organized many events with nationally recognized poets, artists, educators and activists, and she herself has performed at schools, organizations, and protests around the country. She also always keeps room stocked with chocolates and tea, in case anyone has some feelings they need to express.

Ronald Beghetto

Dr. Ronald Beghetto is an internationally recognized expert on creative thought and action in educational settings. He serves as Professor of Educational Psychology at the University of Connecticut, Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Creative Behavior, and is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association. Dr. Beghetto’s work highlights how making slight changes to existing practices can result in new ways of thinking and acting. More information on Dr. Beghetto can be found at: www.ronaldbeghetto.com

Ronald Rohner

Ronald P. Rohner, PhD., is Emeritus Professor of Human Development and Family Studies, and Anthropology at the University of Connecticut. He has been Director of the Ronald and Nancy Rohner Center for the Study of Interpersonal Acceptance and Rejection since 1981, and is Executive Director and former president of the International Society for Interpersonal Acceptance and Rejection. He received the American Psychological Association (APA) Award for Distinguished Contributions to the International Advancement of Psychology in 2004. He also received the APA Outstanding International Psychologist Award from the USA for 2008. He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, the American Psychological Society, and the American Anthropological Association. He is also former President of the Board of Directors of Natchaug Hospital, and past President of the Society for Cross-Cultural Research. And he has served on the Board of Directors of the Connecticut Association for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect.

Samuel Kebede

Sam Kebede is an third year MFA Acting candidate in the School of Fine Arts at UConn. Before moving to Storrs, Sam received graduated with highest distinction from Duke University with a B.S. in Neuroscience, a B.A. in Theatre Studies, and a Minor in Biology. He has worn many different employment hats, including Secretary, Camp Counselor, Lab Technician, MC, Event Coordinator, Educator. He is excited to share what he's learned from his winding walk of life.

Samuel Schick

Sam is interested in machine learning algorithms and data science. With a wide variety of interests ranging from astrophysics to global health, he hopes to “make the world a better place” one small step at a time.

Seja Jackson

I have been caring for people living with HIV for over 35 years, first as an RN and the last 21 years as a nurse practitioner. HIV care is my calling and my passion. I have worked primarily in outpatient ambulatory care clinics in the inner city areas of Hartford, CT providing primary and HIV care. Presently, I also work in conjunction with the City of Hartford Health Department to provide PrEP (Pre-exposure prophylaxis) to persons at risk for contracting HIV. I have also done many other kinds of nursing including sexual disease nurse practitioner, primary care provider, and working in a Hospice program. I am presently a student at the University of Connecticut in the PhD program at the School of Nursing. My research is focused on HIV, particularly, aging with HIV.

Shar Govindan

Shar is an elected alumnus to UConn’s Academy of Distinguished Engineers and Director of Content Management at Bentley Systems Inc. He has educated 1000s of people around the World and shared his expertise by coauthoring multiple books and articles. Shar started the Govindan family foundation program that has awarded numerous fellowships to UConn students, hundreds of interest-free loans through Kiva.org and sponsors food grills for FeelGood.org student chapters. He is inspired by community development, lifelong learning, and selfless humans.

Organizing team


CT, United States