As a student at the University of Rochester, you can make waves. Whether you’re an EcoRep advocating for sustainability, or a Baja SAE member striving to enhance the team’s car, or a Students for a Democratic Society member spreading political awareness on campus, you’re making waves. And this was the exact theme of this year’s University of Rochester TEDx event, held on April 22. Attending the event, I was truly inspired by all the speakers, motivating all audience members to become wave makers. Here’s a short summary of some of the speakers’ talks:
Luke Wood, the president of Beats by Dr. Dre
As a Rochester native, Luke was immersed in the early stages of WRUR, the Rochester-based radio station. It was astonishing for the audience to discover that Wood, a renowned songwriter and musician, started his career at WRUR cleaning the lounges and sorting the music discs. He shared with the audience his experience in the early days of technology and how it shaped music. Specifically, he elaborated on the impact of various music bands on the development of his musical character.
Anis Kallel, Co-founder of Kaoun
As a University of Rochester alumnus, Anis’ talk was very special and was a homecoming celebration. Anis graduated with a BS in computer science and a BA in business, which helped him become more immersed in the ecosystems of engineering markets. He took a job with the Swiss investment group Seedstars as their associate for Africa. There, he got the opportunity to travel to 16 Sub-Saharan African countries in 2017 to identify the best early-stage startups. In his talk, Anis was sharing insights from some of the startups he worked with in Africa, explaining how Africa is the future of investment. Also, he presented the work his startup “Kaoun” is doing in Tunisia by facilitating monetary matters, acting as a virtual bank.
James McGrath, BME professor at the University of Rochester
James, who is currently a professor in the biomedical engineering department, has been serving as the associate director of URNano and the co-founder of SiMPore Inc., a company founded to commercially manufacture nanomembranes. In his talk, James discussed the future of nanomembranes in the medical industry, and how they can be used to improve the hemodialysis treatment. In particular, he discussed how his work and collaboration with engineers from RIT has impacted the membranes industry. His company is currently working on developing a wearable membrane sleeve that serves as a hemodialysis machine, replacing the currently used systems where patients feel drained and exhausted and where the process takes several hours.
You’ll be able to enjoy amazing events like this as a Rochester student. Take advantage of as many as you can!