TEDxCSU spreads innovation in Fort Collins community

TED (conference)
TED (conference) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This story has been updated at 12:14 p.m. Thursday, June 19. Some content has been updated.

Colorado State University has long been an academic haven, and today its students are proactively perpetuating the long held aims of innovation and intellectual curiosity.


TEDxCSU is a student organization, licensed by TED LLC, that puts together TED talks for the local CSU and Fort Collins community.

After starting three years ago, TEDxCSU has worked to provide a place where learning and ideas are shared with ease.

“TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience,” said Erin Oppenheim, the organization’s public relations director and senior journalism major.

That TED-like experience can spread concepts and themes to students in a strong way.

“TEDxCSU is an event CSU students should know about because it is a powerful experience to be part of a giant think tank, and especially a community think tank,” said Blaise Rosenberg, a fourth-year natural resource major. “Unlike the video TED talks you can watch online, TEDxCSU has an added element of community, which is worth experiencing.”

The speakers at TEDxCSU events have varied disciplines to appeal to a wide audience. The talks are filmed and put on YouTube with other TED talks, allowing those who missed events to benefit.

Students may find that it is more than the speakers that generate the lessons at TEDxCSU events.

“Sharing ideas at a TEDxCSU is a catalyst for engaging conversations in the audience, so not only did I learn from the speakers, but also the crowd I was a part of,” said Rosenberg.

The student organization is currently working on next year’s list of speakers, and is searching to continue the wide breadth of topics they have covered in years past.

According to Palec, the organization’s theme is based off a Maya Angelou quote: “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”


“We were highly inspired by this quote because we think strongly about the positive impact knowledge has in our communities,” Palec said. It’s a philosophy we want to carry.”

TEDxCSU’s third annual conference occurs on Oct. 11, 2014. The speaker application deadline is July 23, 2014. Students interested in this organization can find more information on their website.

“Whether it’s one of our smaller salons, or the main conference this fall, it’s a great opportunity for students to learn new things from a variety of disciplines and be inspired to take action themselves,” said Oppenheim.

Collegian Staff Reporter Zack Burley can be reached at news@collegian.com.