x = independently organized TED event

This event occurred on
September 24, 2023
Santa Cruz, California
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).

1205 Soquel Ave
Santa Cruz, California, 95062
United States
Event type:
Youth (What is this?)
See more ­T­E­Dx­Merit­Academy events


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

Aidan Levan

High school student
Aidan Levan is the creator of the app, Loved Ones Are Found. He is fascinated by mechanical engineering, guitars, and cars. He plays lead guitar in his band, and he enjoys to play rock music. Aidan just came back from South Africa and Vietnam. He loves to travel with his family and play with his two poodles. He hopes to become a mechanical engineer and design cars.

Daisy Payton

College student
Daisy attended the University of San Francisco and received her degree in Psychology and minor in Neuroscience. Currently, she runs her family’s ranch and cares for her hoard of animals. She’s applying to Psychology and Behavioral Neuroscience PhD programs this fall and plans to research genetics, neural basis of emotion, and psychopathology.

Kiran Sunil

High school student
Kiran Sunil is a high school senior from San Jose. He enjoys playing tennis and basketball, as well as participating in programming and robotics competitions. He aspires to continue studying computer science, and pursue a career in software development. He is determined to leverage technology to reduce gun violence.

Mehtaab Dhillon

High School Student
Mehtaab Dhillon is a high school senior from the Central Valley. He aspires to become a physician and master communication to become the most effective physician possible. Along with effective communication, Mehtaab wishes to create a healthier society fueled by his passion for Biology and Chemistry. For fun, Mehtaab enjoys distance running and spending time with family.

Michele Roush

Director of NLP Consulting & Training, Michele helps individuals and groups become more healthy, happy, and resilient. In clinical psychology, she worked in crisis, pain management, and recovery milieus. For 25+ years she has coached participants and staff at NLPU’s certification programs at UCSC.

Neha Surendar

High school student
Neha Surendar is a high school senior who lives in Texas. She competes in Speech & Debate, ranking among the top 25 students in Texas. Neha embraces her Desi culture and recently took an interest in learning about its culinary traditions. Upon graduation, Neha intends to study neuroscience and pursue a career in healthcare.

Nicholas Tran

High school student
At 14, Nicholas was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. He fundraises to find a cure and organizes events to bring his community together. Nicholas also enjoys playing golf with his dad, and with his free time, he explores ingredients and creates new and friendly recipes that spice up the culinary delights of IBD patients.

Organizing team


Santa Cruz, CA, United States