Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

5 Ted Talks by UT faculty, alumni to change student’s lives

Rong Hua Wang

College serves as a time to grow where people can become the best version of themselves. However, sometimes people need a little inspiration to get started. Luckily, several UT faculty and alumni can offer plenty of sage advice. The Daily Texan compiled a list of Ted and TEDx talks by UT professors and graduates that might just change students’ lives. 

Emmanuel Acho Why you should stop setting goals (yes, really)

Many young people hear about setting goals at a young age — maybe they’re even sick of hearing it, so Acho’s talk serves as a refreshing perspective for those looking for a different method to succeed. Acho draws from his experience as a linebacker on the UT football team desperate to get drafted in the first three rounds of the NFL. Today, Acho boasts an illustrious career as a broadcaster and content creator — jobs he attributes to not setting goals.

Brené Brown – The power of vulnerability

Brown, a visiting professor at UT, discusses her work as a “qualitative researcher and storyteller” looking into what separates people who harbor a feeling of worthiness versus those who don’t. As the title suggests, Brown found the answer to be vulnerability. So, for those looking for a talk that’s both funny and a reminder to embrace every emotion, this one proves perfect. 

Jamie C. Beard – The untapped energy source that could power the planet

This talk might not change anyone’s daily life, but, instead, could provide some optimism about the state of the climate. Beard represents UT in the Texas Geothermal Institute and believes society lives in a “geothermal renaissance” with the power to solve humanity’s energy crisis. Beard explains in her rousing talk that oil and gas companies seem primed to transition into a geothermal industry, making geothermal a win-win for everyone.

Gloria Chan Packer Work is not your family

A lot of students might not work full-time jobs right now, but Packer’s main message on the importance of boundaries proves useful for other situations, including schoolwork. In a talk that gets emotional at times, Packer, a McCombs alumna, details her overcommitment to her previous work in the business world. She spends the backend of her talk encouraging the audience to reflect on their own experience and develop their own boundaries.

Jeremi Suri – Jeremi Suri at TEDxSMU 2012

While a viewer might not want to change their major right away, Suri’s talk makes for an interesting historical perspective on how change can be made. Suri, a current UT history professor, structures his talk around engaging historical anecdotes. His main points should be more than just food for thought at a university with the slogan “What starts here changes the world.”

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About the Contributor
Rong Hua Wang, Senior Comics Illustrator
Rong Hua is a second year student studying Computer Science and Arts and Entertainment Technologies. This is her second semester as the Senior Comics Illustrator; previously, she was an Opinion Illustrator during Fall 2021. Loving all things creative, she enjoys doodling and crocheting in her free time.