Published Mar. 7, 2023
BY MAGGIE JOHNSTON
While many have a fear of public speaking, a group of CHS students defy odds through the TEDx club by delivering speeches that not only gives students an outlet to share ideas and passions, but gives them an opportunity to have their talk posted on the real TED webpage.
On March 19, seven Carmel High students will share passionate and creative ideas in the form of TED Talks in the CHS performing arts center for the 3rd annual TEDx Carmel event. While some of these speakers are in the CHS TEDx club, others went through auditions to ensure they had the speaking skills and the ideas to form an engaging talk which correlated with the event’s theme.
Club president Hannah Shu is the main organizer of the upcoming beach-themed event labeled “Waves of Ideas” and works hard to delegate tasks among vice presidents Ayami Cole and Simona Matiyevsky.
“The best part about TEDx is the community that we have,” Shu says. “It takes practice and teamwork to make something like this go smoothly and done well.”
Physics teacher Don Freitas, adviser of Carmel’s TEDx chapter, has a hands-off approach with the guidance of this club, which ensures that the student leaders can take charge.
“It is the students’ ideas and their club,” Freitas observes. “They run it the way they want to. It’s fabulous because a lot of times things are heard from the adult perspective, and it’s great to hear students’ ideas as well.”
Matiyevsky explains her role in helping the speakers prepare their talks, making them feel audience-ready and confident.
“I have done a talk before, and I understand the process,” Matiyevsky explains. “I answer their questions and give them helpful feedback and encouragement.”
Senior Cole Prekoski, a first-time speaker for TEDx, has crafted a speech on female characters’ costuming in the Marvel franchise and how it is perceived by the audience. After researching this topic and developing her opinion, the speech came easier because of her passion and love for it.
“The club has been super supportive given that I’ve never given a talk before,” Prekoski explains. “Once I started writing, the ideas just flowed.”
The hours of planning and writing that students put into an event like this is reflective of their own motivation and teamwork as a collective group.
“We like public speaking, of course, but this is more than that. It’s an art form,” the club president explains. “We have to cooperate, collaborate and learn how to do it together.”
With the club’s major success last year, they decided to keep admission free for the public, but donations are welcome.
For more information about this event on March 19 at 3 p.m., see the TEDx Carmel webpage.