Get to know the accomplished individuals who will present at the TEDxGreenville conference on April 8th! In this series, writer Jennifer Oladipo asks some compelling questions.
What was the last idea, big or small, that you thought was an idea worth sharing?
This idea of taking life as it comes without trying to orchestrate it . . . following the breadcrumbs and existing organically in every way. It is a type of full surrender that isn’t easy because most of us have allowed society to rewire us–to be boxed in, to follow a set of rules or sets of rules that heavily define us and at the same time kill that natural intuition that is there to guide and protect us.
Where do you find inspiration?
I find inspiration through my relationship with God through prayer and meditation; and I also find inspiration through positive experiences with people who have good hearts, genuine spirits, and loving energy.
What is the next frontier for the human race?
Embracing “real” diversity and remembering that we are just that – the “human race.” This anger, intensity, and inflexibility around differences are diminishing us globally.
Do you live life as a road to travel, a ladder to climb, or something else?
I definitely live life as a road to travel. It is a fascinating journey with hills and valleys and twists and turns along the way. We can experience it from afar with binoculars, or we can gear up and get into it and really explore it moment by moment!
How does your work or art affect the way you see yourself?
I am an educator in an environment where people get to recreate their lives. As the first person in my family to go to college, and to have earned a Ph.D., the work I do is deeply meaningful. I see myself as being a position to give back to the communities that need it the most.
What is your favorite TED talk and why?
Rita Pierson: “Every Kid Needs a Champion” because it is such a powerful presentation about generational poverty, but also addresses how we see the world through our middle-class lens, and how we can make a difference. It is filled with so many messages that have stayed with me, and I was fortunate to have the opportunity to see Ms. Pierson speak live on the topic of generational poverty – powerful, “shifting” concepts.
From the first time I attended a full-day TEDx Greenville event, I was wide-eyed with amazement. It stimulated all of my senses and was like nothing I had ever experienced before; and it was so professionally orchestrated. As a result of that and other TEDx experiences, I have actually begun to follow a band I hadn’t heard of previously, have incorporated into my lifestyle little tips and tricks I learned, and definitely experienced a shift in my mindset around certain topics. I am thrilled about the idea of being able to be a part of something that can impact others in the same way. And because TED Talks are international, it’s bigger than Greenville. I feel like I’m joining a worldwide community of thinkers and doers. It’s a very cool feeling, and I am honored to be a part of it.
For more information about Kaleidoscope speakers and performers, visit our 2016 presenter page, where extended bios are available. The April 8th event is sold out, but watch for details about our free live feed.