TEDx Coming to SEMO

Stock image: Creative commonsFor those familiar with TED Talks, TEDx is a local, self-organized event that brings people together for a TED-like experience. For those unfamiliar, TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to ‘Ideas Worth Spreading.’  TED Talks take place during annual conferences where the world’s leading academics and activists speak on important topics.


TEDxSoutheastMissouriStateUniversity is being held to discuss ‘Diverse Passions.’ Several speakers from SEMO have been selected to talk about their different passions in the social and academic world. Speakers include faculty of the university: Dr. Allen Gathman, professor of biology and associate dean of online learning, will discuss human genetic diversity versus the social constructs of race. Dr. Kenneth Heischmidt, professor in the Department of Management and Marketing, and director of the MBA program, will discuss how each graduate is one in a million both literally and figuratively. Dr. Debra Lee-Distefano, professor in the Department of Global Cultures and Languages, will talk on the issues with assumptions regarding who is from or belongs where. Dr. Tamara Zellars Buck, associate professor of mass media, will discuss how minorities are portrayed in the media.

This TEDx event began with Junior corporate communication student Collin Ritter, who worked with his professor in Communication Studies, Brooke Clubbs. The two completed the application process, and were granted approval from the TED organization. At the event, two TED Talk videos will be showcased along with the four speakers, followed by small group discussion.

Community tickets will go on sale Wednesday, Feb. 3. Tickets are being sold only online at and are $25 sold on a first-come, first-served basis. The student tickets are offered for free thanks to sponsorship from the Cape Girardeau Area Chamber of Commerce and Codefi. The lottery for student tickets will be open Feb. 3-10, and students can register online at After verification of Southeast ID numbers, winners will be chosen and contacted by Feb. 12. If selected, students must provide a valid Redhawks ID and pick up their tickets in Academic Hall Room 213 by Feb. 17 or they will forfeit their ticket.

TEDx will be held Thursday, March 3, at the Aleen Vogel Wehking Alumni Center on Broadway St. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. Appetizers will be served before the program begins at 7:00 p.m.


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