Auburn University to present TEDx event on global challenges and social innovations

AUBURN UNIVERSITY – Auburn University will host TEDx Wednesday, March 27, at The Hotel at Auburn University and Dixon Conference Center. The public event will focus on global challenges and social innovations and is designed to inspire students, faculty, staff and the community.

“TED talks have the power to motivate those who listen to them,” said Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs Amy Hecht. “TEDx is an opportunity and educational resource to share the good work both on campus and in our community.”

The event will begin at 1 p.m. in the hotel’s auditorium. Thom Gossom Jr., actor, author, athlete and Auburn alumnus, will serve as master of ceremonies. A host of diverse speakers from around the community and nation will talk about gender inequity, education achievement gap, hunger and poverty, environmental sustainability and global health.

“Each of the speakers will address a global challenge and how to make a positive difference,” Hecht said. “We want to encourage attendees to work toward social innovation and entrepreneurship.”

Environmentalist and human rights activist and international speaker Dianne Dillon-Ridgley will serve as the keynote speaker. Her talk is titled “Sustainability, Justice and Hunger: Sowing a Brighter Future.”

Senior Katie Brennan, Auburn’s sole student speaker, said she is looking forward to talking about finding her passion – a journey that took her around the world.

“As a student you are in the perfect situation to make a difference, and this is the time to find your dream and start working toward accomplishing it,” Brennan said. “Auburn is the ideal school to host a TEDx talk because there are so many active and informed students here, and Auburn has the resources to support their ideas and passions.”

The free event is sponsored by the Division of Student Affairs and the College of Human Sciences. To register, visit

TED is a nonprofit devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. The TEDx program gives communities, organizations and individuals the opportunity to stimulate dialogue through TED-like experiences at the local level. TEDx events are planned and coordinated independently. For more information, go to the TED website at

(Written by Chelsea Payne.)

Contact: Chelsea Payne, Division of Student Affairs, (334) 844-8920 (, or
Mike Clardy, Office of Communications and Marketing, (334) 844-9999 (