x = independently organized TED event

This event occurred on
March 24, 2018
The Woodlands, Texas
United States

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized (subject to certain rules and regulations).

Huntsman Advanced Technology Center
8600 Gosling Rd
The Woodlands, Texas, 77381
United States
Event type:
Youth (What is this?)
See more ­T­E­Dx­Youth@­The­Woodlands events


Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Alejandro Castro Macias

Alejandro Castro Macias is a senior at The Woodlands High School. Throughout high school he has spent the majority of his time participating in debate, tennis, philosophy, AP expansion, and various Rotary sponsored activities. Castro is always seeking to think outside of the box. His eagerness to seek out new experiences and learn what he can about the world around him stems from the belief that innovation comes about from building a bridge that connects two seemingly unrelated ideas together. He hopes to expand on this belief throughout his formal education and apply it to his work later on. Although not sure of where Castro will attend college, he hopes to pursue a degree in finance.

Gabriel Poveda

Gabriel Poveda is a student at The Woodlands High School, where he is part of the school’s debate team as well as a member of the Ann Marie Hopkins Art Alliance. His interest in the environment started at a young age, when he first saw Al Gore’s documentary An Inconvenient Truth. Since then, he was inspired to learn and increase awareness about the environment. The son of Colombian immigrants, Gabriel’s parents encourage him to learn about different perspectives through education, and he firmly believes that climate change will be the defining issue of the century. He was recently accepted into the Climate Reality Project headed by Al Gore.

Gabrielle Dufrene

Gabbi Dufrene is originally from New Orleans, Louisiana. She’s passionate about writing, poetry, growing in her faith, drinking coffee, and getting to know the people around her through the Humans of The Woodlands project. Aside from working at Trader Joe’s, she enjoys spending time with her boyfriend, Jack, her friends, and her family. She will attend Loyola University Chicago in the fall where she will study creative writing.

Jimmy Qian

Jimmy Qian is a junior at Liberty High School in Frisco, TX. He is the Founder and CEO of The Live A Life That Matters Foundation (LLM), a non-profit organization that empowers teenagers to discover themselves and is also an established author. The organization currently holds 20+ board members from Cypress, Houston, Dallas, and Washington areas in addition to its exhibition sponsorship from Key Club and club chapters that are currently being operated across in Texas. Aside from LLM, Jimmy shares his message to the youth as a staff writer for numerous organizations such as Teenage Entrepreneur Corporation Pty Ltd. and The Global Voice. His young entrepreneurial ambitions has led him to become featured in DECA’s Entrepreneurship Magazine in 2018. Jimmy is on a journey to empower his peers to believe that they can create and innovate anything instead of being defined by the expectations of our society, parents, and the traditional education system.

Maddie Ferrand

Maddie Ferrand is a dedicated seventeen year old with a passion for medical sciences and writing. Although involved in exclusive organizations, such as the National Honors Society, Beyond the Cover, and the Pride Dance Team, she finds time to take Advanced Placement classes, work as a Cryotechnician, and write essays for her blog. In her future, she aspires to conduct further genomic cancer research and contribute to the search for the cure.

Mustafa Arshad

Mustafa was born and raised in Saudi Arabia to Pakistani parents, and he is a natural American citizen. After moving in 2014, Mustafa used high school as an opportunity to genuinely learn and find his true passions. His four years in high school have entailed numerous open doors, and it has kindled a fire inside of him. Mustafa’s dreams of building bridges across cultural divisions and lessening ignorance were empowered by his values and bolstered by his drive. He wants to inspire those around him to find something that matters to them– something laced with their values and not a status quo.

Ruochen Jin

Ruochen Jin is a sophomore at The Woodlands High School, where she actively participates in a number of social and leadership organizations including Interact and Student Council. She was the producer of an Arts and Cultural Festival last year at her previous school (Waterloo Collegiate Institute), which involves over 200 performers. She is also currently the founder of Careers Club, a place where speakers from all different professions come in and help students explore different careers they might be interested in pursuing. She was born in Shanghai, China and have lived in both China and Canada for many years before moving to Texas. Being very familiar with all three cultures and affluent in Mandarin, English, and French; she hopes to use her multi-cultural background to help lead others. She have made many of her goals a reality, and hope with her presentation to help others do the same.

Sakethram Desabhotla

Sakethram Desabhotla is a high school senior at The John Cooper School in The Woodlands, TX. Before high school, he had the opportunity to travel the world and live in places like Nigeria and Papua New Guinea, which gave him a humbling international perspective. After moving to the United States as a high school Freshman, Sakethram consistently pursued diverse active leadership roles in numerous student organizations such as the Student Government Association, the TED-Ed Club, and the Chess Club. As a passionate public speaker, Sakethram loves to share and discuss various ideas to inspire others and develop his perspective. When not on stage or leading in different capacities, you can find him playing cricket, playing video games, or discussing politics and philosophy with his friends and family.

Stephanie Bension

Motivational Speaker
Stephanie Bension embodies the phrase, “big things come in small packages”. She is a poet and performer from Houston, Texas, but has graced stages internationally. Stephanie has a huge, energetic presence and sharp writing that has charmed audiences such as the ACLU, Improv Comedy Club, Children’s Museum Houston, Texas Southern University, and the Texas Grand Slam poetry competition just to name a few. She is a two time member of the Houston VIP Slam Team and a regional winner of the Women of the World Poetry Slam. When she’s not traveling and setting microphones on fire, she enjoys performing for students, corporate events, weddings, brunches and more! She likes fictional characters too much and sleeps too little, but perseverance, a close circle of good friends and family and her faith in God keep her grounded, motivated and sharing her talents with the world.

Organizing team


The Woodlands, TX, United States


TX, United States
  • Kelly Zhou
  • William Chao