Creating Inspiration & Community: Insights into TEDx Organisation with Miray, Judy and Cristina


Judy third from the left, Cristina first and Miray second from the right.
Photograph: Anna Sedláková (Second Faculty of Medicine)

TEDx Charles University 2024 is just around the corner, featuring the theme 'What Matters' on 18 May. Step behind the curtain of TEDx with three of its organisers – Miray, Judy and Cristina as they unveil their story. Learn what motivates them, the challenges they've overcome, and their dreams for the event.

What was the inspiration behind this year's topic – What Matters?

Cristina: It is very nice in the sense that it is open-ended. We wanted the speakers to choose their topics based on what matters to them. When you pick a topic for an event, it can end up being really specific, e.g. focusing only on science. By keeping 'What Matters' open-ended, we get a wider range of speakers, which makes the event more interesting.

Miray: It must be a bit abstract; it has to match every kind of topic according to the speakers and what they are passionate about, that was one of the criteria.

Cristina: I think, nowadays in a modern world, "What Matters" is a big thing and everyone has their opinions, which makes it interesting – everyone can take it as their feel.

Judy: I like this topic because it gives the speakers an opportunity not only to talk about their profession, but they can also incorporate their life stories. Their life is not just about being a doctor or working in AI, they have stories outside of that.

How do you select speakers for the event? Do you have any criteria to ensure a diverse range of perspectives?

Cristina: Since we are a medical school, it would easily go into an event completely about medicine, so that was our first criterion – to narrow medical topics into a maximum of two speakers. I went on Forbes 30 Under 30 where I got inspired. That's probably where it all started. There were waves of disappointment and success. But I am happy with how it turned out.

What is the topic you are most excited about?

Miray: I am really excited about Andrea Zajacová’s speech since she will be talking about lung transplantation, and this is a topic I am also deeply interested in. She has always inspired me to take the right steps forward in order to become an exceptional physician, and I am sure she will be inspiring a lot of other people with the speech.

Cristina: There is going to be a topic about auto-immune disorders and stress – the connection between these two. I will also be waiting for the speech about how we can make Prague more cycling friendly.

Judy: I would say, sustainability would be my topic of choice as it's something we as medical students don't hear so often, and I am hoping even other people from different faculties will get inspired and it will be eye-opening for everyone.

Can you share any behind-the-scenes stories from organising TEDx?

Judy: As we are medical students, we haven´t had the opportunities to have a meeting in person so it had been mostly online unfortunately.

Cristina: The day before my Internal Medicine state exam, I was planning an Instagram post until about 10 p.m. instead of studying, which is a bit of a switch in between what am I supposed to do. I might be changing my career towards an event organizer (laugh).

Is there any challenge you have to face?

Cristina: Nobody can understand how much work goes into this thing before you start doing it. It really needs a lot of time and dedication. We took a big bite by doing this as medical students.

Judy: There are also some rejections from the speakers, and for me, seeing emails of rejection is also quite challenging.

What do you hope the attendees will take away from the experience at the TEDx event?

Judy: I want people to gain the point of view they haven't seen during their studies. E.g., we as medical students don't hear about sustainability much, so maybe we can earn that, people from the Faculty of Arts haven't probably heard much about transplantology, so they can see that other interesting things are going on outside their life.

Miray: I would want them to get inspired by what the speakers are doing, how they are doing that and what motivates them. Abstractly take something more, so they can implement this motivation and passion into their own topics or studies.

Cristina: I hope to establish community of people, who will want to annually attend this event. The event is designed to connect people.

All: Come to this event, we put our heart and passion into, and we really wish to see everyone from the university, a diverse population of people. There is going to be something for everyone!

By Anna Sedláková

Created: 29. 4. 2024 / Modified: 7. 6. 2024 / Mgr. Petr Andreas, Ph.D.