x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Quantum Leaps: Intelligence, Innovation, and Imagination

This event occurred on
December 16, 2017
9:00am - 2:00pm EST
(UTC -5hrs)
Atlanta, Georgia
United States

TEDxMaysHighSchool is an independently organized event under the license of TED and will feature twelve dynamic and powerhouse speakers from the Mays High community. Our speakers tackle subject matter that deals with intelligence, imagination, and innovation. The presenters for TEDxMaysHighSchool are taking quantum leaps in thoughts and ideas to inform and enlighten the mind of our youth and the community.

Taking the leap with our speakers will be performers who are just as dynamic. The BELLES (Beautiful Educated Ladies of Legacy Empowered for Success) a school based organization that formed a step team just to support the TEDxMaysHighSchool speakers. They are under the direction of science teacher, Trion Clark. In addition, the illustrious Young Poets Society of Mays High School, under the direction of Language Arts teacher, Ahmariah Jackson will enlighten our audience with influential verses and prose. Ahmariah Jackson also performs professionally under the stage name of ANON the Griot.

This groundbreaking event for the Mays community will take place in the auditorium at Benjamin E. Mays High school at 3450 Benjamin E. Mays Drive on Dec. 16, 2017 from 9-2pm.

We will have an intimate audience of only 100 people and tickets are on sale now in the office of Benjamin Mays High School for $15.00.

Benjamin E. Mays High School
3450 Benjamin E. Mays Drive
Atlanta, Georgia, 30331
United States
Event type:
Youth (What is this?)
See more ­T­E­Dx­Mays­High­School events


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

Dinah Hutson

10th Grade Student/Speaker
Fifteen year old Dinah Hutson is a very intriguing teenager. She is a word wizard. Ripe in her thoughts and mindset, Dinah is an expressive, opinionated, and mature young lady. She is a hub of talent and a true renaissance child. Her thinking is beyond her years. Ms. Hutson uses her voice, to sing like a bird, to discourse like a philosopher, to lay verse like a poetress, and to speak up like an activist. She is also the author of two books. Dinah has a very lively personality and a keen way of connecting everything back to the meaning of life. She thinks critically about the world and expresses her thoughts eloquently. Exposure, beliefs, and her religion give her vision. She also believes that when there is nothing left, and little hope, there is poetry.

Jaime Witherspoon

11th Grade Student/Speaker
Jaime is a junior at Mays High and a top athlete on the girls softball team. She is #2 in the state of Georgia for Grand slams by a girl. She believes in equality and speaks up on behalf of other students that she feels are voiceless. She is a drum major for social justice and loves to see people smile. She is captivating in personality, can sing like a bird, and she enjoys diffusing trouble and making peace. Ms. Witherspoon performs in her bathroom as a singer on a daily basis and aspires to be a world class performer.

Jay Wamsted, PhD

Jay Wamsted has been teaching math at Benjamin E. Mays High School in southwest Atlanta for twelve years. In 2013 he earned a Ph.D. from Georgia State University, writing a dissertation focused on race and identity in the classroom. He has published in various journals and magazines—including Mathematics Teacher, Qualitative Inquiry, and The Southeast Review—and written chapters for two books: Teaching Mathematics for Social Justice and Decentering the Researcher-Subject in Intimate Scholarship. He has contributed also to the Mockingbird website at He and his wife have four young children, and he rides his bicycle to and from work almost exclusively.

Joshua Stargell

12th Grade Scholar/Speaker
Joshua is a senior at Mays High School with aspirations to become a Meteorologist. Raised in Atlanta he would lay outside on his trampoline watching the clouds as they traveled through the sky forming different patterns and configurations. The oncoming cloud formations and storm fronts where always enticing to him. Viewing the clouds was extremely fastening to witness and is one of his favorite past times thus, sparking and enticing his interest and future studies of clouds and weather as a Meteorologist. As a child, he was involved in many stimulating activities including Boy Scouts, The Young Astronomers Club, Band, and Marital Arts. Currently serving the Mays High community as an Ambassador of the No Place for Hate club (President), Swim Team (Co-Captain), Golf team (Co-Captain), Jazz Band, Wind Symphony, JROTC Drill Team Co-Commander, Long standing youth representative at the Greater New Light Baptist Church, and Jr. Chief Meteorologist at the Benjamin E. Mays High School.

Katelynn Duggins

12th Grade Student/Speaker
Katelynn is a senior at Mays High School. She was Raised in Cincinnati, Ohio and moved to Atlanta, Georgia in 2015. Growing up she faced many struggles that have shaped her to be the young woman she is today. Despite her struggles and ridicule by others, she stayed focused on her education and managed to obtain and maintain a spot in the top 10% of her graduating class while successfully balancing many extra curricular activities and strenuous academic courses. Throughout her journey the most important thing to her is staying humble and true to who she really is. She is a member of the BELLES Leadership club and served at Emory University during the summer as a junior intern. She aspires to become a pediatrician.

Kenia Zuniga

9th Grade Student/Speaker
A 9th grader at Benjamin E. Mays High School, Kenia is the middle child among her siblings. Born and raised in Atlanta, Kenia’s parents are both Hispanics from Mexico and raised her to have a strong faith in God. She loves the city life, Centennial Park and Soccer. Her favorite subject is Math. She likes to study numbers and loves the wonder and surprise in solving mathematical equations. She believes that if one is good in Math, everything should be possible. Kenia believes in the value of education and, she is so excited to participate and share her knowledge at TEDxMaysHighSchool.

Marktorria Fletcher

Marktorria Fletcher, a product of Atlanta Public Schools often spent afterschool at a Metro Atlanta Boys and Girls club where he was introduced to Judo. Mark quickly showed natural talent. He began as a junior athlete and was given the opportunity to travel the world competing in Judo. Larger than most boys his age, he often competed with adults and established his number one ranking in the heavy weight division at the age of 13 and later became a 6-time Junior Olympic Champion. Mark hopes to be the first American man to achieve Olympic Gold medal status in Judo. Mark directly contributes his work ethic and success to his exposure to Judo. He spends most of his time helping students to build and maintain relationships with their teachers, each other, and their families and he also helps them to develop individualized plans for achieving success. In addition, Coach Markatorria Fletcher teaches and facilitates Personal Safety, Hand to Hand Combat, and Rape Prevention Seminars.

Micyra Cohen

12th Grade Student/Speaker
Micyra Cohen is a native to Atlanta, Georgia. She is a modern day renaissance girl who loves art and science. Ms. Cohen is a A-B Honor Roll student who enjoys critical thinking and expressing her thoughts to enlighten those around her. Micyra loves the art of life and plans to major in Environmental Engineering when she attends college in the fall of 2018. She is passionate about the care and study of wildlife and their well being . Micyra is also an exquisite artist as well as entrepreneur who draws, paints, and sells different assortments of meaningful art pieces that people admire.

Payton Johnson

11th Grade Student/Speaker
Payton Johnson is a reserved, but voluble and veracious 11th grade student from Benjamin E. Mays High School. Payton enjoys photography, playing basketball, and building and designing structures as any designer he aspires to be would. He was the valedictorian for his middle school, was ranked #1 in his 9th grade year, and has ranked just as high up until his current year. Throughout his high school career, Payton has been offered many opportunities to travel to France, New York, and Washington D.C. He even takes advantage of a number of clubs in school from the chess club to being on the Academic Decathlon team. Currently, he is exploring his opportunities in search for his true passion, which he hopes to continue for the rest of his life. Payton strongly believes that anyone can do anything they dream no matter how ambitious, but only if they are willing to do absolutely anything to achieve it.

Samuel Abrams

11th Grade Student/Speaker
Samuel Abram is a 3rd year Benjamin E. Mays scholar. He was born and raised in Atlanta, Ga and is the oldest child of 3 boys. Sam is extremely active in numerous activities including the wind symphony, basketball, swimming, and tennis. He has been passionate about athletics as long as he can remember, but due to physical issues, he has been stunted in his growth. This shortcoming has inspired his studies in height challenges around the world. Sam wants to major in Software Engineering at Georgia Tech. He is the section leader in the Marching Band, star player of the tennis team. Mr. Abram has been positively influenced by many height challenged athletes such as Nate Robinson and Spud Webb and inspired by their greatness.

Shurhea Mitchell

Shurhea Mitchell, formerly, Shurhea Mitchell Norman, was born and raised in Kansas city, Missouri. She was an accomplished entertainer from a very young age, performing in plays, singing and rapping. She was an accomplished track athlete as well, receiving a track scholarship to attend Park University and then a full ride to Clark Atlanta University where she graduated with a BA in Mass Communications. Ms. Mitchell, who calls herself a renaissance woman has enjoyed career success in entertainment and real estate. Later in life, she discovered her love of education, she is has been teaching Spanish for the past 8 years and now holds a Masters in ESL and Bilingual Education. She has dedicated her life to the pursuit of happiness and the gifting of the same to all that she encounters.

Sydney Ragland

12th Grade Student/Speaker
Sydney is ambitious, diligent, and persistent and ranks number three in her senior class with a 4.0 GPA. She is a member of the Beta Club and National Honor Society, serves as Head Drum Major for the 2017-2018 Raider Marching Band, and participates in various extracurricular activities including the Mays High School Wind Symphony, golf team, Math club, French club, First Tee of Atlanta, Girl Scouts of America, and the Maynard Jackson Youth Foundation. Sydney also makes time for volunteering in her community and hobbies that include listening to and playing music. After graduating high school, her plans are to pursue a career as a Pediatric Emergency Medicine Physician. Sydney's favorite quote is "They told me I couldn't, that's why I did."

Organizing team


Atlanta, GA, United States


Atlanta , GA, United States