x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Courage to Persist

This event occurred on
September 25, 2021
12:30pm - 2:30pm EDT
(UTC -4hrs)
Storrs, Connecticut
United States

Failure in our society is all too common. However, if failure is so prevalent, what encourages people to try again – to start a new business, to rebuild and re-launch a rocket, or to draft a new book – and succeed? Particularly during this time, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, people have lost hope and motivation as we become more and more uncertain about the future. What can we do, what stories can we tell, what lessons can we teach to inspire others to have the Courage to Persist?

University of Connecticut Student Union - Ballroom
2110 Hillside Rd
Room 330/331
Storrs, Connecticut, 06269
United States
Event type:
Salon (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Anika Kumar

Anika Kumar is a sophomore at the University of Connecticut with a major in Business Data Analytics and a passion for all things inclusive, body positive, and profound. She began her journey to self-love and better self-care practices amidst the at-home quietness of the COVID-19 pandemic, when she truly started to hone in her efforts on writing poetry. Being able to craft her thoughts into words allowed her to better understand and validate her own feelings, which put her on the path to creating positive change in her self-talk, self-perception, and self-acceptance. Anika advocates to change the narrative and prevent external pressures from changing her perception of herself and her worth through embracing self care and a healthy mindset. Her mission is to help others find a healthy balance between their personal and professional lives by opening their eyes to the power of self love, and hopes to influence others to feel at home in their own skin, the same way she learned to.

Pauline Batista

Ph.D. Student (Neag School of Education, University of Connecticut)
Pauline Batista is a Ph.D. student at the Neag School of Education, where she finished her coursework and is preparing for her comparative exams. She uses film in her research work across Afro Latinx communities located in UNESCO Heritage Sites in Latin America. She believes Participatory Action Research combined with Photovoice and Participatory video can be really powerful in supporting Black and Brown communities in voicing their perspectives. She was recently invited to present her work at UNESCO’s Biennale 2021 in Luanda, Angola. Pauline was honored as a Rio Summer Olympics Torch Bearer in 2016 because of her outstanding community work. Some of her relevant director and storytelling credits include participation in Globo TV’s community filmmaking lab “PARATYÉ”, which connected local filmmakers to one of the largest TV Networks in the world. She is 2020 Reading and Language Arts Center Fellow at UConn Neag’s Department of Curriculum and Instruction.

Sumeet Kadian

My name is Sumeet Kadian and I am a rising junior majoring in Molecular and Cell Biology and minoring in Healthcare Management and Insurance Studies. I am also pursuing an individualized major in Healthcare and Society. My interest in medicine started when I was in middle school, and since then, I have always been eager to learn more about the field. However, my various experiences volunteering in a local hospital, serving as an EMT, and shadowing healthcare workers has shown me that medicine is far from perfect, with problems ranging from ensuring equitable healthcare access to the mental health of healthcare workers. On campus, I conduct research in a neurobiology lab, serve as vice president for Medical Minds Matter, am involved in a task force on modifying the general education curriculum, and work with Community Outreach as a trip director for the Alternative Breaks Program.

Tamika Blackburn

Attending Physician at Student Health and Wellness Center
Dr. Blackburn is currently an attending physician at the UConn Student Health and Wellness Center. She has been board certified in Internal Medicine since completion of her post graduate training in 2008. In the past 13 years she has developed experience in inpatient, outpatient and academic medicine. She was previously a hospitalist and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Columbia University Medical Center. Prior to her work as a clinician-educator she received her medical degree from New York University School of Medicine and completed her internship and residency at Yale University’s Internal Medicine Program. Throughout her career she has passionately taught, inspired and mentored high school students, medical students and residents and continues to do so. On a personal note, she enjoys singing, dancing and trying new recipes with her preschooler. Traveling and learning new customs were also important past-times for her and her family pre-pandemic.

Organizing team


Storrs, CT, United States