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Villanovans Inspire Others to “Ignite Change” at Inaugural TEDxVillanovaU Event -- Videos Now Online

Thirteen extraordinary presenters from the Villanova University community shared their passionate views on a variety of subjects at TEDxVillanovaU, March 28 at the Connelly Center. TEDxVillanovaU brought together creative thinkers and innovators including alumni, faculty and students to inspire others and help “ignite change”, the conference’s theme­- through sharing their stories, passions and discoveries. Click here to watch their talks.

The TEDxVillanovaU presenters and their talk titles include:

  • Eliza Behymer ’09 A&S, ’12 MS, Kathleen Gavin ’13 MS, and Amanda Slattery ’10 A&S, ’13 MS – Sharing is Not Just for Kindergarteners
  • Jonathan Chain, ’13 MBA – Speaking of Change
  • Alyssa Fischer ’12 MSSE and Wairimu Mwangi ’10 ChE, ’12 MSSE – A Framework for Change: Widening the Scope of Corporate Sustainability
  • Timothy Horner, Ph.D. – Who would you kill for? The Nature in Genocide
  • George James ’01 A&S – The Power of Relationships: Building Connections to Ignite Change
  • Patrick Maggitti, Ph.D. – It’s Not Just for Artists Anymore: The Creativity Imperative of the 21st Century
  • Ariana Meltzer-Bruhn ’14 A&S – Ability: Can You Do It?
  • Michele Pistone, J.D., LL.M. – The Future of Higher Education
  • Randy Weinstein, Ph.D. – How Dr. Seuss Damaged Engineering in the US

“TEDxVillanovaU’s vision was to showcase the most fascinating thinkers and doers from Villanova for a stimulating day of presentations, discussions, and entertainment that will spark new ideas, innovations and opportunities across all disciplines,” said Helen K. Lafferty, Ph.D., TEDxVillanovaU organizer.

About TEDx, x = independently organized event: 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.

About TED: TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. Started as a four-day conference in California 26 years ago, TED has grown to support those world-changing ideas with multiple initiatives. At TED, the world's leading thinkers and doers are asked to give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes. Talks are then made available, free, at TED speakers have included Bill Gates, Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sir Richard Branson, Benoit Mandelbrot, Philippe Starck, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Isabel Allende and former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Two major TED events are held each year: The TED Conference takes place every spring in Long Beach, California (along with a parallel conference, TEDActive, in Palm Springs), and TEDGlobal is held each summer in Edinburgh, Scotland. For information about TED's upcoming conferences, visit Follow TED on Twitter at, or on Facebook at

About Villanova University: Since 1842, Villanova University’s Augustinian Catholic intellectual tradition has been the cornerstone of an academic community in which students learn to think critically, act compassionately and succeed while serving others. There are more than 10,000 undergraduate, graduate and law students in the University's five colleges – the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Villanova School of Business, the College of Engineering, the College of Nursing and the Villanova University School of Law. As students grow intellectually, Villanova prepares them to become ethical leaders who create positive change everywhere life takes them.