x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Explore the Unknown

This event occurred on
January 25, 2020
Waverly, Iowa
United States

TEDxWartburgCollege “Explore the Unknown” aims to create a free and secure space for people who want to share their experiences of discovering, creating and exploring their ideas. “Explore the Unknown” intends to make individuals take a journey into their definition of the unknown, free their imagination and at the same time integrate through their stories. By exploring the unknown, we want the audience to get drawn into the speakers’ journey of innovation and discovery. On the other hand, we want the speakers to challenge themselves and feel ready to inspire.
TEDxWartburgCollege is an independently organized event at Wartburg College, which has been present since 2018. After having successfully accomplished the two previous events, TEDxWartburgCollege decides to continue its potential tradition of bringing people together through a shared vision. Each year, we give our speakers the stage of confidence and a choice to start new and willing. And each year, we give the audience one of the most inspiring and wonderful experiences in life and the opportunity to change from experience.

Wartburg College
100 Wartburg BLVD
Waverly, Iowa, 50677
United States
Event type:
University (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Alejandro Salazar

International Relations, Political Science, Sociology, Intercultural Communications. UWC Alumni. Wartburg Alumni. Patient Care Coordinator at VGM, Waterloo, IA
Alejandro Salazar (Speaker), Ecuador, UWC and Wartburg Alumni, Patient Care Coordinator at VGM, Top Bucket List item: Travel around South America. Alejandro Salazar will share studies that support the notion that humans are capable to empathize in a neurological level with “outside groups” through common fears. By exploring these fears, Salazar believes that a better understanding will be obtained about the reason why individuals are afraid of exploring what is unknown to them.

Brittany Strause

Third Year Student at Wartburg College, Waverly, IA
Brittany Strause (Speaker), Plano-Illinois, Third Year, Social Work major with a minor in Spanish, Top Bucket List item: “Travel to as many countries as I can”. Topic: Mental Health has no face. Strause will address the misconceptions about Mental Health and how society has created the idea that one is not truly suffering unless it is visible.

Cole Imperi

Dual-certified thanatologist, interfaith chaplain, researcher, serial entrepreneur
Cole Imperi (Speaker), Cincinnati-Ohio.Topic: Shadowloss: Shedding Light On Our Hidden Grief. Cole Imperi is a dual-certified thanatologist, interfaith chaplain, researcher, serial entrepreneur and one of America’s leading voices on death, dying and grief. As a writer, podcast host, teacher and speaker, she is enthusiastically changing the way we approach loss, death and dying in the United States, and teaches how to live a brighter life by finding the light of loss. Imperi reaches more than 1 million Americans a year and even more outside the US.

Dr. Celina Peerman

Organizational Psychologist with a B.S. in Psychology & International Studies, M.A. in Business/Human Resources, and a Ph.D. in Psychology
Dr. Celina Peerman (Speaker), Waverly-Iowa, Organizational Psychologist with a B.S. in Psychology & International Studies, M.A. in Business/Human Resources, and a Ph.D. in Psychology, Top Bucket List item: “So many...travel everywhere. Nepal - Trek to Katmandu”. Celina Peerman will discuss about the importance of creating a human revolution at work. Given the rate and pace of change, she emphasizes the need to move from the information age to the human age to understand why humans and AI both are needed in the workplace of tomorrow.

Erik Salzenstein

Erik Salzenstein (Speaker), Bangor-Maine. Topic: Why I Had to Go To Prison To Set Myself Free. Top Bucket List item: Surf a 6 ft wave. Erik is a Motivational Speaker and Coach. Having battled with addiction for many years and serving 4 years in prison he understands what it feels like to feel hopeless. While in prison he made a decision to transform his life and that he did. He’s now focused on helping others break free from their own chains and creating the changes they desire.

Matapron Musikathum

Fourth Year Student at Wartburg College, Waverly, IA
Matapron Musikathum (Speaker), Thailand, Fourth Year Wartburg student, Business Administration Major, Top Bucket List item: Explore the World. Topic: Transition to adulthood, what’s your plan? Musikathum talks about the Graduation and post-graduation period, and how it’s like feeling afraid of the unknown future leading up to adulthood.

Sthela Gun Holly Hanitrinirina

Gender Justice for Madagascar (REFORM) Funder/CEO International Women Leader Scholar '19 B.S in Intercultural Communication, Antananarivo, Madagascar B.A in Social Work, Decorah, IA
Sthela Gun Holly Hanitrinirina (Speaker), Madagascar, Gender Justice for Madagascar (REFORM) Founder/CEO, Top Bucket List item: “Get my Ph.D. in Social Work and be the first female to hold a Ph.D in my Family”. Topic: The Legacy of Unknown Women Hanitrinirina emphasizes the importance of giving equal access of education to women and girls. Furthermore, addressing the question: How would it be if we step into a world where women have the same access to opportunity as men?

Umaru Balde

Umaru W. Balde (Speaker), Cedar Falls-Iowa, Top Bucket List item: Get a 2nd M.A degree. Topic: Eliminate the Comfort Zone to Achieve Success. Balde’s life experience is an example to describe how it feels to be unsure of where your life is heading. In addition, Balde explains that in order to be transformed, we have to be okay with uncertainty and eliminate our comfort zone.

Organizing team


Waverly, IA, United States


Waverly, IA, United States