x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Colliding Worlds

This event occurred on
March 11, 2018
London, Ontario

We find comfort in the familiar and predictable. Venturing into interdisciplinary collaborations means to be confronted with opposing views and disruptive changes. Although it can be intimidating to go beyond our boundaries, it is through embracing collaborative experiences that we make room for a deeper understanding of the world. These encounters challenge us to empathize with one another, to question for more, and to look beyond what we already know. TEDxWesternU encourages us to share our stories and expand our views – to collide without fear.

1151 Richmond Street
London, Ontario, N6A 3K7
Event type:
University (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Arthur Brown

Scientist, Robarts Research Institute
Dr. Arthur Brown has a long-standing interest in neurodevelopment and regeneration and has trained at the Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute in Toronto and the Salk Institute in San Diego. He has made the conscious decision to combine his interests in neurodevelopment with spinal cord regeneration therapies. He has received the Premiers Research Excellence Award and the New Investigators Award from the Heart and Stroke Foundation.

Barbara MacQuarrie

Community Director, Centre for Research & Education on Violence Against Women & Children
Barb MacQuarrie is the Community Director of the Centre for Research & Education on Violence Against Women & Children at Western University. She engages community-based and academic partners in research and education initiatives. Barb coordinated the first Canadian study on the impacts of domestic violence on the workplace. She is a recipient of the Order of Ontario, the province’s highest official honour, recognizing individual excellence.

Bonnie Schmidt

President and Founder, Let’s Talk Science
Dr. Bonnie Schmidt is the president of Let’s Talk Science, a national charitable organization that engages youth and educators in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Bonnie is a passionate advocate for education and the need for change to ensure Canadian youth are prepared to thrive in a rapidly changing world. Bonnie volunteers for several organizations, lives in London and enjoys working with her horse and travelling.

Jeff Preston

Assistant Professor, Disability Studies
Jeff Preston, Ph.D., is an assistant professor of Disability Studies at King’s University College at Western University where he teaches classes on disability, popular culture and policy. A long-time advocate and motivational speaker, Jeff’s work focuses on the intersection of disability, subjectivity, biopower and culture. Jeff’s first book, The Fantasy of Disability, was published in 2016 by Routledge.

Levi Hord

Rhodes Scholarship Recipient & Transgender Advocate
Levi Hord is a gender theorist, spoken word artist, and 2018 Rhodes Scholar-Elect committed to radically challenging the very systems through which we define identity. Combining academic engagement with community advocacy, Levi works to illuminate moments where both theory and creativity can help move communities and discussions forward.

Nick Van der Velde

Principal Consultant, Impact Consulting
Nick van der Velde aims to disrupt ineffective community or business models, by designing and implementing social enterprises - businesses or events that blend “for-profit strategy” with “non-for-profit values”. Over the last three years, Nick has raised over $1.1M and his research, business model design and (team) work provided training and employment to 165+ individuals.

Rick McGhie

Musician & Western University Performer
A long standing London musical icon and alumnus, Rick McGhie has been an integral part of student culture at Western University. Rick’s lively performances all throughout his musical career have brought locals, alumni and student communities together.

Sacha Bhatia

Founding Director, Women’s College Hospital
As a former advisor to the Premier of Ontario on health, Sacha has been working at the intersection of public policy and digital health reform locally and nationally. As the founding director of WIHV, his team tests ideas that intend to solve some of the toughest challenges facing our healthcare system, from the rise of chronic disease to an aging population.

Shoaib Rizvi

Founder & Executive Director, I Am An Entrepreneur
Shoaib Rizvi is an undergraduate student and a passionate advocate for women’s empowerment. As founder of the I Am An Entrepreneur, Rizvi is dedicated to advancing Pakistani women’s economic participation through microloans and training. He has previously interviewed widows affected by terrorism to produce the film Voices From Karachi. In 2017, he addressed the United Nations Youth Assembly and now speaks to young leaders around the world.

Organizing team


London, ON, Canada
  • Cheryl Yip
  • Gazal Grewal
  • Julia Latacka
  • Mahathi Mundluru
  • Mathew Hoy
  • Nancy Nguyen