December 21, 2018

Independently organized TEDx Talk explored the theme of truth

Hackettstown, N.J., December 21, 2019— Centenary University brought the excitement of TED Talks to its campus recently with the University’s first ever TEDx Talk, centering around the theme of truth. Through the efforts of Jonathan Lopes, assistant director of experiential learning, Centenary faculty and theater students, as well as members of the local community, contributed to the 80-min program, which was simulcast on YouTube.

Lopes’ previous experience with TEDx facilitated this partnership, and the Centenary community is benefiting greatly. “This event highlighted this gem of an institution and its emphasis on community outreach,” said Lopes, who hosted his own Tedx Talk on The Art of Community Service earlier this year in Maryland. In addition to Lopes, Tim Guella, director of social media for Centenary’s Social Media Center of Expertise/#theVIBE, and Timothy Frederiks, Education Department chair, helped to organize the event.

The TEDx Talk at Centenary proved so successful that Lopes was invited as an “Adventure Catalyst” (or visionary TEDx organizer) to attend a Ted Talks annual workshop in Boston. The event sought to introduce more universities to hosting TEDx Talks and other forms of community engagement.

As a result of his experiences at the conference, Lopes now hopes to present an annual Tedx Talk at Centenary. “Assuming we are given a renewal license, Centenary will host an annual event with more speakers, student involvement and outside funding,” he said. “I was able to network and develop ideas in Boston on how to make future events larger, more detailed and polished, and most importantly, interactive.”


About Jonathan Lopes

Jonathan Lopes is Centenary University’s assistant director of experiential learning. He is a first-generation college graduate with AA, BA, and MA degrees in the areas of education and social science. Lopes currently supports the potential of students through Centenary’s internship program, graduate school, and community service opportunities.


About TEDx and TED

TEDx brings the spirit of TED’s mission of ideas worth spreading to local communities around the globe. TEDx events are organized by curious individuals who seek to discover ideas and spark conversations in their own communities. TEDx events include live speakers and recorded TED Talks, and are organized independently under a free license granted by TED.

TED is a nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks (18 minutes or less). TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment, and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics—from science to business to global issues—in more than 100 languages. Meanwhile, independently run TEDx events help share ideas in communities around the world.



Founded in 1867 by the Newark Conference of the United Methodist Church, Centenary University’s academic program integrates a solid liberal arts foundation with a strong career orientation. This mix provides an educational experience that prepares students to succeed in the increasingly global and interdependent world. The University’s main campus is located in Hackettstown, N.J., with its equestrian facility in Washington Township. The Centenary University School of Professional Studies offers degree programs at two locations, Parsippany and Edison, as well as online and at corporate sites throughout New Jersey.