Mangaluru: Eight speakers will be engaging and entertaining the audience at St Joseph Engineering College, Mangaluru on February 16 during the TEDxSJEC event. This is the first time that this prestigious institution will be conducting the event, which will be held in the Kalam Auditorium.
Here are a few of the personalities that will be speaking during the event:
Omkar Pai: An engineer by qualification and a nature enthusiast, Omkar decided to pursue his passion for nature and wildlife conservation. The Western Ghats is his home and playground. He can identify 300 species of frogs, right down to the level of the genus, that thrive in Western Ghats. Of the over 270 species of snakes that exist in India, Omkar has documented over 48 species. He has also documented over 100 butterflies and has documented reptiles in Rajasthan, Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Goa.
Omkar devotes his time to instill love for nature among the youth and carries out awareness programs on wildlife and eco conservation. He believes that we should express our love for nature just like we express love for our fellow human beings. An avid photographer, Omkar has a collection of mesmerizing photographs of snakes and frogs that showcases his patience, his skills and love for nature. Omkar spends days at a stretch in forests without any access to the internet and finds himself completely at home. His ambition is to start a Nature Education Center in his hometown that helps nature enthusiasts research wildlife and ecology.
Vaishak J P: is an adventurist with a deep passion for mountaineering. Inspired by his daily climb through the Chandragiri Hill (Kasaragod, Kerala) to catch a bus to school, Vaishak was captivated with nature and its immense beauty. After completing his bachelor’s degree at St Aloysius College, Mangaluru, he joined his grandfather, a forest officer, in exploring the forests of Karnataka.
Vaishak discovered his love for mountaineering when he and his friends lost their way for two days in Ettina Bhuja, a hill in Southern Karnataka.
During a training session in the indoor climbing gym, Equilibrium Climbing Station in Bengaluru, he witnessed a visually impaired person organising a wall climbing session for over 20 visually impaired children. The image affected him and motivated him to organize a trek for differently abled people in Bengaluru. Soon, Vaishak got a chance to work with Adventures Beyond Barriers Foundation (ABBF), a group that organizes scuba diving, mountaineering, paragliding and other adventure activities for people with (and without) disabilities. Since last March, Vaishak has conducted over 30 adventure camps that included differently abled people. This includes an expedition to Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro, and a 500-kilometer cycling trip from Manali to Khadrung La.
Dr Smitha Hegde: A multifaceted personality, Dr Smitha Hegde has excelled in everything that she has set out to achieve. As a teacher par excellence, a reputed scientist, and as an active environmentalist, Dr Smitha Hegde has done immense justice to the causes she has attached herself to. With interests in Molecular biology, Genetics, Biotechnology, Plant and Environmental Sciences, and Higher Education, her work over the past two decades is testimony to her commitment and intellectual capabilities. Her research on the varying green coverage in Mangaluru area has been recognised by the Forest Department through multiple awards.
Dr Hegde has also dedicated her time and effort to geo-tagging of trees in college campuses and her efforts are lovingly recognised by students who have nicknamed her "Salumaradha Smithakka"! Her work and achievements, coupled with her personality of being a no-nonsense individual with strong opinions, makes her stand-out. As a wonderful orator, who can through her natural wit and sensibilities take her audience on a journey of words, is a delight to listen to.
This is the first time that this prestigious institution will be conducting the event, which will be held in the Kalam Auditorium.
The theme for the day-long event is "Love Conquers All", and with just under a fortnight to go for valentines day... love conquers all is a great theme, especially in these times of hate. Eight inspiring speakers, three glamourous entertainers will conquer you with the tales of all that they have done, and all that you can do - If you believe.
Other speakers include on the day include Capt. Arohi Corrine Antoinette Rasquinha - social worker and founder of White Doves NGO, Girish Bharadwaj- also known as Sethu Bandhu or the Bridgeman of India, Abhiraj Rajadhyaksha and Niyati Mavinkurve - chief storyteller at Following Love, travel writer and author, Dr Smitha Hegde - reputed scientist and active environmentalist, and Mx. Ria Sharma - model, speaker, storyteller and LGBTQAI + youth activist.
Then, of course, there is entertainment - live your passion be it music or the creative arts with Sitar Metal - the Indian classical and rock/metal fusion band, Vidwan Deepak Kumar - Bharathanatyam, Mahima S Rao - Yakshagana, and Prithesh Bhandari and team topping it off with an English play.
SJEC students are no minnows in the creative arts though. Their creative instincts and talents occasionally override their logical brains and the TEDxSJEC event is one such occasion. The students will be showcasing artistic installations, mime, drawings, etc under the title "Corridors of Love".
A token registration fee is all it takes
To get all this and more, interested persons (and having read this piece, you will be) can pay a registration fee of Rs 1250, but wait... don't be put off just yet! The registration includes a TEDxSJEC kit valued at Rs 600, and comprises breakfast, lunch and two refreshments! Participants will also receive an e-certificate as proof that they have attended the event, which will be sent via email.
Please be informed that the registration is on a first-come-first-serve basis.
To know more about the event and to register, go to http://tedxsjec.in/
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