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The Mass Media

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February 26, 2024
An inside look at Bobby B. Beacon’s insides. Illustrated by Bianca Oppedisano/ Mass Media Staff.
Bobby's Inside Story
February 26, 2024

UMass Boston Holds TEDx Event

Mary+C.+Still%2C+Ph.D%2C+and+Assistant+Professor+of+Management+at+UMass+Boston%2C+speaks+in+the+ballroom
Mary C. Still, Ph.D, and Assistant Professor of Management at UMass Boston, speaks in the ballroom

On April 30 the University of Massachusetts Boston held a TEDx event in the Campus Center. There were eight speakers who discussed topics connected to the event’s theme “Lighting The Way For The Future.” Musician Tony DuBlois was the featured entertainment.
Chancellor Keith Motley introduced the event, and the host, Maureen Scully, the Interim Dean of the College of Management, described the speakers as “luminaries.”
The first speaker was Mathew Malone, Massachusetts’s Secretary of Education. His talk centered on the tragic story of a successful student, and he emphasized that the strength of the teacher-student relationship can change the lives of both involved.
Edward J. Benz, the President of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, gave a talk on cutting-edge cancer research methods, such as using genomic information to customize treatment for patients.
Jacob Kariuki, a PhD student in nursing at UMass Boston, spoke about the importance of translational research, community development and supplementing education with real-world experience.
Darren Kew, the Executive Director at UMass Boston’s Center for Peace, Democracy, and Development, prescribed three things for interfaith mediation applicable on both a local and global scale: storytelling, the engagement of high-status-holding leaders, and forgiveness.
Alethea Harney was the Press Secretary for Elizabeth Warren’s 2012 Senate race, and holds other accomplishments in the field of communications. She told audience members about the details of a successful campaign and how they are relevant to everyday life in terms of defining one’s goals, finding supporters, and then inspiring them.
Meghan Duggan, who also spoke, is an Olympic hockey champion. As a youth, she found inspiration in an experienced hockey player, a role she now fulfills for others. According to Duggan, “Everyone benefits when people take the time to learn the passions of those around them.”
Last to speak was Barbara Lynch, Head Chef, restaurateur, and the woman responsible for establishing the charitable Barbara Lynch Foundation. Lynch encouraged audience members to explore the art of cooking and spoke of the lessons it can teach regarding resourcefulness, creativity, organization, and overcoming challenges.
Musical savant Tony DuBlois played Schumann, Bach, and Lizts on a piano at different points during the event, closing the function with a rendition of “A Whole New World” from Disney’s Aladdin. This was made all the more powerful by his own vision impairment.
Intermittently, videos were shown on the two large projection screens. One video was of dancer Adrianne Haslet-Davis at TEDx Vancouver in her first performance since the Boston Marathon Bombing using a special prosthetic leg. Another was a viral video of the “Kid President,” a suit-dressed 9 year-old with advice ranging from insightful and lighthearted to poignant.
When asked how the event has lit the way for the future of the school and broader community, Chancellor Motley said that audience members were exposed to a common thread throughout all of the talks: “If you have a great idea, you can implement it, and then the goal is to sustain it.”
The Student Graduate Association, in an effort spearheaded by Jesse Wright, organized TEDx UMass Boston.
Two Nursing PhD program candidates, Amanda Green and Sabreen Darwish, said the event, “was amazing, innovative and creative, and had ideas with implications for whatever your particular field of interest is.”
The talks from the event will be viewable on the university’s YouTube channel. To the audience members, host Maureen Scully said, “your job is to share these videos…because we are really putting UMass Boston on the map.”