Annual TEDx Talks to continue

Continuing its annual tradition, the Diamond Bar High School Wellness Center will host the  fourth annual TEDx Talks event virtually this year.

In order to accomodate distance learning, the event has been altered in both format and execution. Unlike prior performances, the most prominent difference this year is that speakers will be allowed to use pre-recorded speeches, rather than delivering their presentation live before the audience.

Despite the changes in presentation, Wellness adviser Julie Galindo said that the essence of the event remains the same: promoting a positive message to peers regarding all aspects of wellness.

“Students will write their speeches and film themselves for the audition process,” Galindo said via email. “Once students have filmed their speeches, a panel of judges will determine TEDxTalks to air and we will coach students through any areas that might need revisions.” 

Auditions will be submitted through Google Classroom with the extended deadline being Jan. 8 to account for technical difficulties as well as encourage participants to perfect their speech over winter break. This year’s judges will include GLCs, school psychologists, Wellness interns and Peer Counseling teacher Albert Lim, who will make their decisions according to a rubric identical to those from prior years. Once the audition process is complete, the selected students will then re-record their talk as if speaking to a live audience. 

Galindo said she hopes to see an increase of prospective candidates this year as there will be less pressure on students who fear performing in front of a live audience as well as an extension on the cut off date. 

“Glossophobia, or the fear of public speaking is very real; and unfortunately, can be a crippling deterrent for many. So, by using a virtual format, perhaps those students who would never think to perform a speech in front of a live audience might be willing to go for it this year,” Galindo said via email. 

 Audition information was released in early November and was promoted in the principal’s weekly Brahma Briefing as well as on USB’s instagram. Both media sites also advocated students to share their experiences with their peers as well. 

“Unfortunately,  students are not able to gather together in the theatre to hear awesome inspirational TEDxTalks from their peers. But I hope that more students will choose to participate because I believe every student has an important story and has something positive to share with others,” Galindo said via email. “A message for students: Go for it.” 

With the plan to post the speeches intermittently sporadically throughout the second semester, the team aims to reach a wider breadth of students by utilizing their online platform to spread their message during these times of adversity.