Skidmore College hosts its first TEDxSkidmoreCollege event

Posted by Elizabeth Hopkins '15

Skidmore students Sarah Green '16 and Jake Mitchell '14 have been busy at work this semester organizing one of this semester's largest discussion panels: the first TEDxSkidmoreCollege event entitled"Crossing Borders: Why Creative Thought Matters." The event is scheduled at 7 p.m. on November 18 in Zankel Center's Ladd Concert Hall.

Skidgenuity and the Communications Department are sponsoring the event and Professor Catherine Hill advised Green and Mitchell in organizing it. Skidmore faculty members Heather Hurst, Professor of Anthropology, Flip Phillips, of the Psychology and Neuroscience Departments, and Music professor Anthony Holland will speak at the event.

"The professors will be discussing how their unique career paths have driven them into their interdisciplinary research and findings, as well as their personal passion behind what they do and what they want others to take from it," says Green.

Professor Hurst will give a talk entitled "Painting with Mittens and Bananas: A Collaboration with Ancient Maya Artists," in which she will focus on her own work with Mayan archaeological artifacts. Professor Holland's talk "Shattering Cancer with Resonance Frequencies" will take a scientific turn, while Professor Phillips will add a more artistic element to the event with a discussion entitled "And I'm Still Not an Architect..." The professors were selected based on the interdisciplinary nature of their research, according to Green.

The event is free and open to the community, although the projected volume of attendance warranted the Zankel Box Office to offer tickets. The event is currently sold out, although there will be a few more tickets available on the night of the discussion.

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. (Subject to certain rules and regulations.)

About TED

TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. Started as a four-day conference in California almost 30 years ago, TED has grown to support those world-changing ideas with multiple initiatives. The two annual TED Conferences invite the world's leading thinkers and doers to speak for 18 minutes on a diverse mix of topics. Many of these talks are then made available, free, at TED speakers have included Bill Gates, Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sir Richard Branson, Nandan Nilekani, Philippe Starck, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Isabel Allende and former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown. The TED2014 Conference will take place in Vancouver, British Columbia, along with the TEDActive simulcast in neighboring Whistler. TEDGlobal 2014 will be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

TED's media initiatives include, where new TED Talks are posted daily; the Open Translation Project, which provides subtitles and interactive transcripts as well as translations from volunteers worldwide; the educational initiative TED-Ed; and TEDBooks, short e-books on powerful ideas. TED has established the annual TED Prize, where exceptional individuals with a wish to change the world get help translating their wishes into action; TEDx, which supports individuals or groups in hosting local, self-organized TED-style events around the world; and the TED Fellows program, helping world-changing innovators from around the globe to amplify the impact of their remarkable projects and activities.

Follow TED on Twitter at, or on Facebook at

For information about TED's upcoming conferences, visit

Conversationalist Column: Betty

Campus Safety Report: Nov. 1 to 7