By Jake Huffcutt —

TED talks have long had a reputation of being inspirational presentations focusing on speakers and events on a global scale. Created in 2009, TEDx now has now over 4500 events that have occurred in over 130 countries worldwide.

This year Menomonie joins that number as University of Wisconsin–Stout prepares itself for its first ever TEDx event. Campus Activities Coordinators Emily Ascher and Mary McManus worked together to bring the TEDx brand to Stout this year.

McManus saw that Stout is a hidden gem of an institution and that its community has incredible ideas and talents to explore.

The 8-page application to bring TEDx to our campus was filled out a year ago and last December, McManus got the go ahead from TED organizers to bring the brand name to Stout.

This year there will be 10 presenters who range from a juggling duo to a middle school teacher. Some presenters include Ursula Murray, Aaron Mason, Greta Munns, Nels Paulson, Kobi Shaw, Amy McGovern, and Dan Zabrowski. These presenters were hand picked by the TEDx organizers from 89 applications ranging from 10 different states.

Speaker Dan Zabrowski said, “I am extremely honored but even more excited to speak at the event… the TED name also carries a lot of respect. I hope I can live up to it.”

Another speaker, Stout professor Nels Paulson, said, “I hope I can offer some cool new stuff for people to contemplate and integrate into their daily lives.”

Applicants had to fill out a form and then had to send a five-minute video of their presentation.

Each speaker will be presenting a subject that has to do with this TEDx theme, which is EDGE (explore, discover, grow, engage). Speakers will have 10 minutes to present their talk.

McManus stated that TEDx might continue at Stout in the future if it has a positive reception this year. Audience members will be given an evaluation form so that organizers can receive their feedback to see if the event was powerful or not.

The event will take place on Oct. 23 at 7 p.m. 100 people will be able to see the event in person in the Great Hall at the MSC, and another 400 will be able to see a live stream from the ballrooms also in the MSC. There will be a wait-list from 4 to 7 p.m. on the day of the event for those who were not able to get in and wish to take the place of any no-shows.

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