Katerina’s blog – 11 November 2013

TEDx University Of Manchester

I feel quite proud of myself this week as I managed to turn my favourite procrastination activity into something productive (and let’s face it, that does not happen every day). When it comes to procrastination I’ve done it all – from watching bad reality TV and reading Greek drama to cleaning the house and baking – but my all-time favourite thing is watching TED talks.

 

They are especially amazing when you have to study for an exam as while they are very entertaining and have nothing to do with the fact and theories you should be memorizing, watching them leaves you with the feeling that you have done something that has helped your personal growth and might just be useful at some point in the future, which massively helps eliminate the guilt associated with procrastination.

So, for the past three years, I have spent more time watching TED talks than you can probably imagine. Now imagine my glee and surprise when I saw a friend on Facebook post a link to a volunteering form for TEDxUniversity of Manchester (the “x” in TEDx represents the fact it is an independently organised event). Apparently, there was a relatively small TEDx conference at the University of Manchester last year (around 150 people attended) and the team that organised last year’s event wanted to continue the legacy and expand the event to approximately 1,000 people for which they needed our help. I got put in the Marketing team (!) and our first meeting was probably the best first group meeting I have ever attended – instead of the usual awkward silence, we simply shared our favourite TED videos (here’s mine if you are curious) – which made for an instant bond over something we are all passionate about.  We are now working on the main marketing campaign for the event so hopefully you will very soon be painfully aware of what, when and why is going on regarding the TEDx event.

The other particularly exciting thing happening this week was the Christmas lights switch on, which is one of my favourite things in Manchester as it marks the start of the Christmas festivities the ice rink in Spinning fields is now open, the Christmas market is also opening soon and since I absolutely adore Christmas and all the positive energy associated with it, I am always really looking forward to the lights switch on.

Kat 1

My flat mate and I at the Christmas Lights switch on

Although I was slightly disappointed that James Arthur only performed two songs and that it rained, I still loved the fireworks and the whole community feel, which I sometimes miss on campus as everyone you see on a daily basis is a student.

Hope you all have an amazing week and are as excited about the Christmas market opening on Friday as I am! 🙂

P.S. Remember the kids I told you I would be mentoring in debating? Well, it turns out I have two groups in two different schools – one is an all-girls school and the other – an all-boys one, so I think it would be really interesting to see how the exact same session (in terms of content and exercises we are doing) pans out in the two groups. By the end of the year I might have come up with a genius theory about the way gender affects the effectiveness of different teaching methods so stay tuned!

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