TED Talk Pushes Students to Dream Big

Listening to messages of hope for the future, how we could have a hand in changing the world and how the connection between artist and audience slowly come together in unexpected ways, in unexpected places was the basis for “TEDxValenciaCollegeLive: DARE TO DREAM.”

The event, which was held at Valencia College’s Winter Park Campus, revolved around the power of dreams, how to harness them, and most importantly, how to live them. The popular TEDx events provide a local gathering where live TED-like talks and videos previously recorded at TED conferences are shared with the community.  

The ”Dare to Dream” event was headlined by Astro Teller, Riccardo Sabatini, Adam Savage and Al Gore. The attendees also had the opportunity to interact with the Winter Park Global Studies Honor students, as well as special guest students and professors from Koning Willem I College of the Netherlands.

“I’ve always heard about them [TED Talks] and how they’re crazy good, so I’m excited to take a look at this one,” Valencia College student Kevin Valencia said prior to the broadcasting of the Ted Talks.

The night began with Astro Teller; head of Google X, who spoke about the moonshot factory which evokes the greatness of Google’s plans on having solar powered balloons. Miles up in the sky, these balloons might provide internet world wide. The moonshot factory reminds the dreamers to have “concrete plans to make them real.”

“We believe in dreams at the moonshot factory, but enthusiastic skepticism is not the enemy of boundless optimism, it’s optimisms perfect partner,” Teller said. “It unlocks the potential in every idea. We can create the future that is in our dreams.”

Italian scientist and entrepreneur, Riccardo Sabatini spoke about his most recent research, which centers on computational genomics and how to crack the code of life. He spoke about our genetic code, which consists of 3 billion DNA letters and out of those 3 billion, all humans share the same 2 billion letter genetic code.

“What makes me, me, and you, you, are just about 5 million letters,” Sabatini said. “Half a book and for the rest, we’re all absolutely identical.”

Popular television show “Mythbusters” host Adam Savage shared some of his childhood memories on how much he loved to create costumes and how over many years while working the show, he learned that costuming can play a key role in storytelling.

“All of us on that floor are injecting ourselves into a narrative that meant something to us, and we are making it our own,” Savage said. “We’re connecting to something important inside of us, and the costumes are how we reveal ourselves to each other.”

Al Gore spoke about the deepest fear of many; the fear that we are all destroying our planet by overheating it and how we can see the change.

“The best projections in the world 16 years ago were that by 2010, the world would be able to install 30 gigawatts of wind capacity,” Gore said. “We beat that mark by 14 and a half times over. We see the cost coming down dramatically; we’re going to win this. We are going to prevail.”

The night ended with an amazing performance by John Legend and many individuals from different parts of the city and even the world, headed home more inspired than ever.