Students, Guest Speakers participate in TedxASL conference


Maddy Whitman

Johannes Helberg was the seventh speaker of event. He describes his constantly adapted poem where AI constantly adapts his poem to try and write using his voice.

Helen Roth, Features Editor: Online

For the third year in ASL’s history, ASL hosted Tedx, a platform in which students, with the addition of guest speakers, are able to speak about a certain idea or topic for around 10-20 minutes. This year’s TedxASL theme was inspired by Bob Dylan’s famous song “The Times, They Are a Changin’.” The event was comprised of five guest speakers – Dr. Nadine Hachach-Haram, Rukmini Banerji, Jordan Levy, Johannes Heldén and Giacomo Manca di Villahermosa. In addition, four student speakers – Isabella Muri (’22), Micaella Lavi (’21), Jose Franciso Lecaros (’20) and Amanda Mond (’20). 

Each speaker spoke about their own personal interpretation of the theme, filling the day with a range of topics such as poetry, technology, surgery, and echo chambers. Amelia Learner (’21) thought this range of interpretations evolved student’s perspectives on certain topics. “It was nice that the entire day was devoted to having speakers talk about different subjects they are passionate about,” she said. 

Learner believed all the talks were extremely interesting, though particularly loved listening to the students’ talk. “I felt [the students] were very powerful as they are closer to our age and, therefore, had more of an impact on me,” she said. 

Furthermore, the day was essentially structured in “threes,” having three speakers talk followed by a break – three times. This enabled both student and faculty members to listen to all the talks. 

However, Learner believes that the structure of the day could be changed in the future to better suit students’ personal interests. “Learning about the speakers was really interesting, but if one person is more passionate about the environment, for example, and one person is more passionate about education, it would be better to choose what you want to hear in order to be more engaged with the talk,” she said.