6th annual TEDxBellarmineU event will explore 'Community Resilience' on March 15

March 12, 2024

TEDxBellarmineU crew 2023
Bellarmine University’s TEDx team will present its sixth annual TEDx event on Friday, March 15, with seven speakers addressing the theme of “Community Resilience.”  
“Resilience” also describes TEDxBellarmineU. Only 40 percent of TED license holders have even a second event, said Dr. Shawn Apostel, associate professor of Communication and Bellarmine’s license holder.
But Bellarmine has produced one annually since 2019—including the year of the pandemic, when the event was livestreamed. The first year, the speakers came primarily from the university. This year, TEDxBellarmineU’s team received nearly 200 submissions from across the country.
TEDx is a program of local, self-organized storytelling events that are affiliated with TED, an international nonprofit organization devoted to “Ideas Worth Spreading” that was founded 30 years ago.
What makes Bellarmine’s TEDx program so successful? “It’s the students,” Apostel said. “They are hard workers, they’re creative and they do amazing work.”
The students, who represent a wide range of majors, handle everything from selecting each year’s theme and voting on the speakers to marketing and emceeing the show and handling administration, budgets and catering.
This year, TEDxBellarmineU became a Registered Student Organization (RSO), which allows the group to apply for funding from the Student Government Association and retain any profit it makes from the annual events. The goal of RSO status is to make the program self-sustaining, Apostel said.
Abigail Bullock, the president of the RSO, who is majoring in Communication and Design, Arts & Technology (DAT), is a senior in her fourth year with TEDxBellarmineU. Working on TEDx is voluntary, and students don’t get academic credit, but the experience is more valuable than credit, she said.
“First of all, it’s an opportunity to integrate what I've been learning in college into a more real-world setting,” she said. “It doesn't feel like a school project. It feels like way more than that in the best possible way. It's also a wonderful networking opportunity. You get to know so many students from different areas, and we all come together for this one thing, which I think is incredible.”
TEDxBellarmineU is also a great thing to have on a resume, said Angela Miller, who teaches courses in Communication and DAT and works closely with the TEDx program. “Everyone has heard of TED.”

If you go: TEDxBellarmineU

What: Speakers from Bellarmine, Louisville and well beyond will address the theme “Community Resilience.” The event will feature food, drinks, local vendors and student entertainment.
When: Friday, March 15, 5:30-9 p.m. Doors open at 5:30 for hors d'oeuvres, drinks, live music, improv and games. TEDx talks will begin promptly at 6:30 and will last approximately two hours with a 15-minute intermission.
Where: Cralle Theater, Wyatt Center for the Arts
Tickets: $30 plus fees at the door. A limited number of early bird tickets ($25 plus fees) are available for faculty and staff at this link. All ticket contribution funds go toward creating a sustainable annual TEDx event. 

2024 Speakers

Steven Michael Carr: Development & operations director for IDEAS xLab and founder of SMC Story Coaching; has told stories for The Moth, Double-Edged Stories, We Still Like You, USA Today's Storytellers Project and Louisville Fringe Fest.
DeWana Hadder: Thought leader from Louisville who has spent 17 years in the nonprofit sector and is pursuing a Ph.D. in education sciences with a concentration in educational policy studies and evaluation at the University of Kentucky.
Michael Kopp: An assistant professor of art at Bellarmine University and the founding director of The Social Practice Lab, a nonprofit that aims to narrow the health equity gap and serves as a host for collaborative projects addressing the intersection of public health and public art.
Jim Loring: Award-winning humanitarian photographer who has served as chief photographer and photographic editor for numerous aid organizations, including Care International, World Vision, Save the Children, Childfund and Tearfund UK. 
Clay Marshall: Worked for Commonwealth Theatre from 2002 to 2019 as a teacher, technical assistant and eventually technical director; he and his partner, Cherie Lanier, founded and operate Bourbon Tango, a social dance studio that allows people to embody music.
Zoey Parker: Criminal justice major at Bellarmine who has been playing bluegrass music since the age of 7, sharpening her skills on the banjo ever since. 
Gin Spaulding: An author, educator, and speaker who specializes in helping families and organizations understand the challenges faced by children with sensory issues. Serves as a volunteer for Salvation Army, Blankets of Hope by Maleah and Friends, and Delta Sigma Theta sorority.

All News Stories