"TEDxUSC has been a fantastic forum for connecting ideas and people in surprising new ways, celebrating a culture of innovation on campus, and showcasing the groundbreaking interdisciplinary work at USC," says Krisztina 'Z' Holly, Vice Provost for Innovation at USC and curator of the event. "We are humbled to see how successfully the model has spread around the world."
TEDxUSC 2012 featured twenty performances and talks over three sessions. Each session was carefully constructed to take the audience farther along "A Journey Through Spheres of Influence," which was the theme for this year's event.
Session one was about influencing and being influenced through community and play. Speakers and performers included:
Ascendance - A performance by the
Los Angeles Contemporary Dance Company
Elizabeth Yochim - Founder of pARTiciPLAY
Ali Arastu - USC medical student telling stories from his year on Skid Row
Rodney Mullen - Successful entrepreneur, inventor, and the godfather of modern street skating sharing his tricks about innovation
Amy Jo Kim - Game designing neuroscientist and adjunct faculty in USC School of Cinematic Arts sharing new ideas about collaborative gaming
MC Lars – Rapper and educator influenced by Shakespeare, with a special guest performance by the RFK-LA Hip-Hop Collective.
Session two took the audience on a journey inward, challenging our assumptions and exploring how we as individuals are influenced in unexpected ways. Speakers and performers included:
Scott Fraser - Forensic neurophysiologist, expert witness, and faculty associate at USC explaining how he brought science into the courtroom to help free a man
Elizabeth Seckel - Psychologist tricking the mind to take away chronic pain in Haiti
Reggie Watts - Improvisational performer, musician, and comedian
Andrea Armani - Optics pioneer and professor of the USC Viterbi School of Engineering sharing new trends in nanotechnology
Doris Kim Sung - Professor at the USC School of Architecture who is using biology to rethink the role of materials in our built environment
The World in Six Songs- A performance featuring Dr. Daniel Levitin, a cappella group Sonos, and the LA Contemporary Dance Company, adapted and directed by David Bridel of the USC School of Dramatic Arts.
Session three was about how the unexpected and unintended can influence our lives and the world. Speakers and performers included:
Aron Kallay - Classical pianist with a twist
Dinah Lenney - Memoirist, actor, and masters in professional writing teacher at USC, musing on art as redemption
Jonathan Clark - Six-time space shuttle crew surgeon dedicating his life to protecting lives in a new era of space travel through the record-breaking Stratos project.
Frances Arnold - Professor of chemical engineering and biochemistry at Caltech speaking about sex, evolution, and innovation
Douglas Thomas - Professor in the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism asking provocative new questions about education
Reggie Watts- Improvised finale performance with projection mapping by We Are Matik
TEDxUSC 2012 also featured six short student films from the USC School of Cinematic Arts:
"Can't Eat Just One" by Emilie Taymor
"Send Me To Heaven" by Andrew Aidman
"Masterpiece" by Michael Koerbel
"A Persistent Illusion" by Brian Frager
"Out of Hand" by Simon Fink
"Shadows" by Darius Turbak and Jordan McKittrick
This year, with the help of innovation partner PricewaterhouseCoopers, TEDxUSC expanded the number of breaks and sessions and significantly enhanced the production quality of the conference.
Also new this year was the Red Bull Game & Demo Lounge in Alumni Park that was open several hours before the show started and provided entertainment, inspiration, and refreshments during the breaks. The lounge housed the coolest video games currently in development by students from the USC Viterbi School of Engineering and USC School of Cinematic Arts, interactive technology demos from the USC Annenberg Innovation Lab and the USC Institute for Creative Technologies and projects by two alumni: a digital media art gallery from The Tiziano Project and motorized skateboard rides from Z Board.
The Trojan Family curated the TEDxUSC outdoor cafe. Recent USC graduate Tracy Lawrence of Chewse.com put together a lineup of local fare that was free of charge to all participants. It included lunch with Maria's Italian Kitchen, the Fry Girl fresh donut cart, a journey through food memory and the food of the Yucatan with local chef Gilberto Cetina of popular Downtown LA restaurant Chichen Itza and an innovative local chocolate shop, ChocoVivo, that specializes in bean to bar creations, including delicious chocolate drinks. Last but not least, there was a full service espresso and coffee bar from USC Alum Bobby Roshan of Cafe Demitasse.
Two hundred USC students also received discount price tickets thanks to support from Goldstar, which also supported the Goldstar Student Lounge.
To watch previous TEDxUSC talks download the TEDxUSC iPhone App or visit the TEDx YouTube Channel. You can also follow us on twitter @USCStevens and Facebook. For any questions or to inquire how to become a TEDxUSC partner or sponsor, please contact Ian Murphy at (310) 689-6397 or Email Contact.
In March of 2009, TEDxUSC became the very first TEDx event ever held in the world. The event sparked a global phenomenon that has resulted in more than 3,700 TEDx events in more than 90 countries and 40 different languages. TEDxUSC is produced and managed by the USC Stevens Institute for Innovation.
About the USC Stevens Institute for Innovation
The USC Stevens Institute for Innovation ( http://stevens.usc.edu ) is a university-wide resource in the Office of the Provost at the University of Southern California that helps identify, nurture, protect, and transfer to the market the most exciting innovations from USC. It also provides a central connection for industry seeking cutting-edge innovations in which to invest. As part of this role, the USC Stevens Institute manages the university's intellectual property portfolio produced by its $650M annual research program. Furthermore, the USC Stevens Institute supports the development the innovator and a culture of innovation at USC through translational mentoring and funding programs, community-building events, and showcase opportunities.