April 24, 2019 | 63° F

Students organize first Mark Conference, continues TEDx

Photo by Shawn Smith |

The University’s TEDx talks took place in April 2013, and featured speakers who encouraged students to become involved in politics and to think critically.

College marks the point in people’s lives when they build up the skills to reach for their dreams, and students often face many bumps along that road. But events like the Mark Conference and TedX talks inspired students to keep their heads high and persevere.

The University held its first-ever Mark Conference last February in the Busch Campus Center, which allowed speakers to talk about leadership, both in professional and personal life.

Throughout the event, students tweeted #RUMARK to share their what they learned from an editor for Marvel Comics, founders of the SouperVan and student leaders in a session called “Ignite Rutgers.”

Courtney O’Connell, assistant director for leadership and training in Student Life, helped coordinate the conference, which attracted around 300 attendees, to inspire students to become better leaders and to leave attendees with the message that they should strive for their dreams.

“The speakers were phenomenal, and it was great that they were more than willing to connect with students after their sessions,” she said. “No dream is too big if you are ready to take it on.”

April’s TEDx talks, held in the Cook Campus Center, embraced the theme “Road to Action,” and featured many speakers who encouraged students to become involved in politics, think critically and make changes on a personal level and societal level.

Taha Najam, organizer of the TEDx conference, said the talks are all about spreading ideas. Outside of the University, the best forum for discussion is TED talks.

“TED stands for technology, entertainment and design,” he said. “I was discussing ideas for diversity events with a group of people, something that would include local leaders, and we came up with the idea for a TED talk.”

Alex Meier

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