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College News

TEDxSJFC Delivers Strong Community Message


TEDxSJFC Delivers Strong Community Message

Approximately 65 people filed into Basil Hall at St. John Fisher College on Monday, December 5, for the College’s first-ever TEDx event – also a first for a local college.

The event was organized and led by students in Professor Kyle Reinson’s Business Communication class, a service-learning course. The theme, “TEDx: Understanding Community,” featured five speakers who focused on what community meant to them and their respective organizations.

Student Joe Tyson served as the event host. Speakers included: Chris Hartman, HeadwaterFoods; Katrina Rex, Neighborworks Rochester; Robert Boyd, faculty member at SUNY Geneseo; Rebecca Priest, St. John’s Home in Rochester; and Tom Proietti, Communication/Journalism professor at Fisher and Monroe Community College. All speakers are service-learning partners of the College.

“The event was tremendously bold and inventive, just to take on. It shows vision and a sense for what is cutting-edge. I was so honored to be part of it,” said Proietti.

Reinson worked closely with the students all semester to make the event a reality. “TEDxSJFC was a success because of our service-learning partners and our Fisher students. I could not think of a more practical way to engage students in the subject than a project that would be about ideas worth spreading."

TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to “Ideas Worth Spreading.” It started out (in 1984) as a conference bringing together people from three worlds: Technology, Entertainment, Design. TEDx was created in the spirit of TED's mission, "ideas worth spreading." The program is designed to give communities, organizations, and individuals the opportunity to stimulate dialogue through TED-like experiences at the local level. At TEDx events, a screening of TEDTalks videos - or a combination of live presenters and TEDTalks videos - sparks deep conversation and connections. TEDx events are fully planned and coordinated independently, on a community-by-community basis.


(From L to R: Professor Tom Proietti, Chris Hartman, Dr. Greg Cunningham, Katrina Rex, Rebecca Priest and Robert Boyd)

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