Transitioning people out of homelessness one issue at a time

Ranya O’Connor tells her story of starting a street paper to help transition people out of homelessness. She discusses how singular actions and interactions can help chip away at even our biggest societal issues.

Ranya Forgotson O’Connor hails from Norman, Oklahoma and serves as Director of The Curbside Chronicle at the Homeless Alliance. The Curbside Chronicle is a magazine that employs homeless and at-risk individuals in Oklahoma City, helping them earn a dignified income and transition into housing and on to further employment opportunities. In addition to covering the local OKC scene, The Curbside Chronicle also includes articles written by those experiencing homelessness and about issues of poverty in our local community. Ranya is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma, where she earned a BA in Marketing and minor in Nonprofit Business. Ranya is passionate about social entrepreneurship and the creativity of finding solutions to social problems through business. She also loves a good pot of Moroccan tea, the art of taxidermy, her Classen Ten Penn neighborhood, and her four cats.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx

Transitioning people out of homelessness one issue at a time

Ranya O’Connor tells her story of starting a street paper to help transition people out of homelessness. She discusses how singular actions and interactions can help chip away at even our biggest societal issues.

Ranya Forgotson O’Connor hails from Norman, Oklahoma and serves as Director of The Curbside Chronicle at the Homeless Alliance. The Curbside Chronicle is a magazine that employs homeless and at-risk individuals in Oklahoma City, helping them earn a dignified income and transition into housing and on to further employment opportunities. In addition to covering the local OKC scene, The Curbside Chronicle also includes articles written by those experiencing homelessness and about issues of poverty in our local community. Ranya is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma, where she earned a BA in Marketing and minor in Nonprofit Business. Ranya is passionate about social entrepreneurship and the creativity of finding solutions to social problems through business. She also loves a good pot of Moroccan tea, the art of taxidermy, her Classen Ten Penn neighborhood, and her four cats.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx

Lucy Mahaffey Has 48 Slaves Working For Her. You Can Change That

In this talk, Lucy describes how she went from simply being passionate about the issue of human trafficking, to actively making a difference.

Lucy Mahaffey learned that slavery still exists when she was 12 years old. Since then, she has made continual and impactful efforts to eradicate human trafficking. Lucy has created a curriculum, HOPE Student Awareness, to educate Oklahoma’s high schools on human trafficking, and she is the founder of Off The Market, the University of Oklahoma’s first conference on human trafficking awareness.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx

Allen Hertzke Advocates For Putting Religious Freedom Back on the Map

Dr. Hertzke’s research has lead him around the world and to three conclusions that he shares in this Talk: Religious freedom is essential to human dignity; it matters more than ever; and it is imperiled.

Dr. Allen Hertzke has chronicled the movement for religious freedom since being plunged into a world of human rights champions, religious exiles, and international law defenders at a think tank conference in 1998.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx

Akash Patel Discuss the Persistence of Undocumented Students

Akash Patel is a political science senior at OU and a Ewing Public Service Fellow who spent this summer researching education policy in Washington, D.C. After graduating in May, he plans to take a year off to work on immigration and education policy either in Oklahoma or in D.C. as well as apply for the Fulbright Scholarship. After spending 16 years as an undocumented immigrant, Akash was inspired to advocate for other struggling immigrants through his honors research project concerning undocumented students in Oklahoma. He now works with the American Civil Liberties Union on the Immigrants Rights Project as well as with the Oklahoma City Public School District to augment English Language Learning programs. After his time off from academia, Akash plans to apply to law school to develop his passion in immigration law and policy.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)

Michael Hernandez Wants To Remove the Gay Blood Ban

Michael Hernandez created an online movement, called All R Equal, Inc., which fights for equality for blood donors. Michael’s petition on Change.org, has garnished nearly 8,000 signatures to allow men who sleep with men, even once, the right to donate blood, which currently hasn’t been allowed since 1981. He is currently an MBA Student at the University of Oklahoma.

Ending World Hunger, One Grilled Cheese at a a Time

FeelGood is a volunteer youth movement of changemakers committed to ending global hunger in our lifetime. Around the country, people are raising money for the end of hunger by running FeelGood Grilled Cheese Delis on college campuses. Every penny raised is invested in hunger-ending organizations with a proven track record of success.

Start a chapter: http://www.feelgood.org/start/

Kristin Walter and Talis Apud-Hendricks are passionate about ending world hunger in our lifetimes. After meeting in college in 2004, they co-founded FeelGood as a student organization with the belief that even something as small as a grilled cheese can make a difference. Kristin has been FeelGood’s Executive Director since graduating in 2005 with a Finance Degree. Under her leadership, FeelGood has grown from a single-campus initiative into a vibrant national movement with over 29 chapters and 17 more currently seeded. FeelGood partners with over 1200 student volunteers, impacting the lives of thousands and raising over $1.4 million for the end of hunger. Talis manages the inovation for FeelGood’s education and technology programs. With an M.S. in Innovation from the Monterrey Institute of Technology, she has pioneered an online platform for meaningfully connecting FeelGood’s many student communities and developing their educational and entrepreneurial goals. Before coming to FeelGood, Talis was a professional athlete, qualifying for the Mexican Olympic team in 2008. She has over seven years experience as a consultant in intercultural management.

Beth Huggins Meets a Streamstress

Beth Huggins asked a question that many students do while in college: “What can I do to tell the world I exist?” In this short TEDxOU Talk, Beth, a current OU student, walks through her involvement with Global Brigades and tells how through meeting one woman and listening to her story, her question got flipped on its head.

Beth is a senior in chemical, biomedical engineering at OU. She plans to attend medical school to obtain an M.D. so that she can travel to developing countries and solve health issues in a holistic manner. The principle of the interconnectedness between health, wealth, and education is something she plans to shed light to the rest of the world and help begin to improve the success of NGO programs abroad.

Beatrice Williamson On The Power Of Education

Beatrice Williamson is a distinguished leader known for her warmth, humor and commitment to learning. She was born in Kisumu, the third largest city in Kenya. From the age of nine years old until her second year of college, Beatrice received a scholarship for education from Swedish missionary Anna Lanson. Education was what Beatrice needed to rise above her circumstances and realize her potential.

“Aunty Bea” as the Maisha children affectionately call her, came to The United States in 2001. In the meantime, Beatrice’s family, living in the village of Kano, just outside of Kisumu, expressed the need and dire situation of the orphans and widows living in their community. The fruition of Beatrice’s dream began in 2006, when she founded Maisha International Orphanage in response to this call for help. Now, her passion is to reach out to orphaned and destitute children and provide them with the same opportunity Anna Lanson gave her. By making a difference in the lives of the children from her home village, Beatrice strives to create a brighter future for the next generation. Her passion is to reach out to orphaned and destitute children and continue the Legacy of Hope Anna Lanson began.

Jeremy Short Talks On His Graphic Approach To Higher Education

Jeremy Short has taken his love of writing graphic novels and has developed it into a teaching tool through graphic textbooks. “I’ve yet to encounter a single soul who can recite a line from a textbook.” Instead, he is looking to mix things up by escaping the “snooze-fest” associated with most textbooks. Short was named Researcher of the Year in 2010 for the College of Business at Texas Tech University prior to joining the faculty at OU.