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Sat, Feb 20


Virtual Conference

TEDxMcMasterU 2021

An afternoon filled with brilliant speakers, thought-provoking videos and mind-blowing conversations. TEDxMcMasterU is a unique event that will unleash new ideas, inspire and inform. The 2021 conference will be conducted in a virtual format. No McMaster University affiliation is required to attend.

Registration is Closed
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Time & Location

Feb 20, 2021, 3:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Virtual Conference

About The Event

Theme: DARE

A day filled with brilliant speakers, thought-provoking videos and mind-blowing conversations. TEDxMcMasterU is a unique event that will unleash new ideas, inspire and inform. No McMaster University affiliation is required to attend.

What does my ticket include?

Tickets include full access to all TEDx talks and talent performances, a complimentary package delivered to your doorstep and access to interactive discussion sessions with our speakers.

Speaker Lineup

A detailed event schedule & speaker lineup will be released shortly.


  • Early Bird

    Discounted ticket prices are available for a limited time - get yours now to save! CLOSING 11:59PM TODAY

    Sold Out
  • Regular

    Regular tickets are available for a limited time - purchase before February 14th to reserve a spot! Are you a registered student in high school or university? Get 25% off with our discounted price for students! Just fill out this Google Form:

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  • Pay It Forward

    By choosing a “Pay it forward” ticket you will receive access to TEDxMcMasterU 2021 and you will also pay TEDx forward such that one ticket will be provided at no cost to a frontline worker. Our goal is to bring as many frontline workers to TEDxMcMasterU 2021 –– these workers have been keeping McMaster, Hamilton, and the whole country running during this pandemic and we cannot thank them enough!

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  • Last Minute

    Are you a registered student in high school or university? Get 25% off with our discounted price for students! Just fill out this Google Form:

    Sold Out

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What's In a Ticket?


Ten speakers delivering never seen before TEDx talks on the theme, LEGACY.


Performances by Spoken Word artists,Indigenous Singer & more


Complementary LEGACY SWAG package distributed at the conference.


Networking opportunities with our world-renowned speakers during the conference and social.

Speaker Lineup

Ready to be Inspired? These dynamic speakers hail from far and wide to share their experiences, stories, and ideas with you.

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Emily Nichols

Engineer - P.Eng, B.Sc.(Eng), MA.Sc.(Eng) 

Originally from Blenheim, Ontario, Emily Nichols grew up on the family farm where her early jobs included hoeing beans, grading onions, picking rocks, and making boring tasks fun for her sisters.

Speaking from the stage or the factory floor, Emily Nichols nudges technical people to embrace their human skills, so they can become better problem solvers, team players, and leaders. A professional engineer with decades of experience in manufacturing and innovation, Emily has worked with organizations like PepsiCo, PPG, Janssen, and Henkel, improving products and processes from breakfast cereal to automotive paint and electrical steel. Emily easily connects at all levels of organizations, inspiring deeper understanding and collaborative teamwork. And she makes learning fun!

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Alex Leonard

Founder of AL Media, Director and Host

Alex Leonard is the founder of AL Media, a Sustainable Media company that is Helping Brands Talk About Sustainability. Through video strategy and production for environmental organizations, AL Media is helping Canadian and international social enterprises break through a noisy digital environment.

Alex is the director behind the award-winning documentary, "Humans and Elephants", which premiered worldwide at the International Vegan Film Festival. It's set to come out later this year. Alex is the host of The Creative Kind Show and The Sustainable Kind Show, speaking with entrepreneurs about their secrets to success in the media and environmental sectors.

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Jeff Joslin

Martial Artist, Former UFC Fighter

Jeff “The Inferno” Joslin is a martial artist in the truest sense of the term. Born and raised in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, Jeff grew up engulfed in the martial arts.

Starting his training at only five years of age, Joslin has developed tremendous depth in his martial arts skills. A black belt in both Karate (6th Degree) and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (4rd Degree), Jeff has accomplished much in the sport:​

  • Won 200+ first place titles in striking, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and submission wrestling competition

  • First Canadian in History to win a Major International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Tournament

  • Apex Fighting MMA World Welterweight Champion

  • Fought in the UFC, TKO, Hardcore Fighting Championships and many other shows

  • Canadian Black Belt Hall of Fame Member (Inducted 2022)

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Krista Carvin

MSW, RSW (Registered Social Worker), Founder of the Curious Collective

Krista Carvin is a Registered Social Worker in Ontario, Canada. She is the Founder of The Curious Collective, a virtual psychotherapy practice.

Krista is deeply curious by nature. Her curiosity led her to a diagnosis of Adult ADHD, the Neurodiversity Movement, and later a therapy specialization. As a human first and as a therapist second, she learned that between the hard work, humour, and heartache of learning you have ADHD, there is an opportunity for joy and justice. Krista values neurodiversity, or the diversity of human minds. She believes all brains and bodies are valuable and worthy of authenticity. Her therapy, education, and activism work is focused on helping neurodivergent people feeling safe, well, and accepted.

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Nick Petrella

Athlete, Professor at Mohawk College - Wellness and Fitness Program

Nick grew up as a competitive athlete, however, many surgeries and countless concussions had a devastating physical and emotional impact on his athletic career. He is now a professor at Mohawk College - Wellness and Fitness Program.


Nick is a two-time recipient of an Instructor Appreciation Award, and an Everyday Hero Award. He is a Mental Health First Aid Instructor with the Mental Health Commission of Canada and speaks on behalf of the Canadian Mental Health Association’s Talking About Mental Illness program. He is a past recipient of the St Joseph’s Hospital Spirit of Hope and the YMCA Peace Medal. He is a co-founding member of the Mohawk College Mental Health in Motion peer to peer support initiative and has been selected by the Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health FACES of Mental Illness in Canada where the goal is to reduce stigma while promoting recovery. 

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Fatima Babakura

Founder, CEO and Designer of Timabee

Fatina Babakura is the founder, chief executive officer and designer of Timabee, an accessories brand that “redefines luxury in Africa and beyond” and Yerwa Secrets, a perfumery brand. Her sharp eye for design, curiosity and yen for imagining a product and bringing it to life motivated her to start Timabee.


Babakura began the brand in her first year while at Mcmaster university. Fatima has received multiple global awards inclduing being listed on Forbes' 2022 30 under 30.

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Shalicia Harris

Founder and CEO, Problem Solver

Shalicia is the Founder & CEO of In Charge with a corporate background in innovation, marketing, and project management. She is a problem solver who turned her lack of financial literacy and poor financial services experience into her start-up In Charge. Now she is revolutionizing the financial services industry with her comprehensive framework the 5 Key Pillars of Personal Finances. Leveraging this framework, she provides individuals with personalized financial literacy that empowers individuals while enabling them to access better and faster financial solutions. She believes everyone should feel comfortable, knowledgeable, and confident when making financial decisions. Shalicia’s goal is to modernize financial services while building trust, transparency, and knowledge for future generation.

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Laura Roy

Writer, Performer and Canadian Egyptologist 

Laura is a writer, performer and Canadian Egyptologist and founder/director of Ancient Egypt Alive, an organization that seeks to inspire passion about Egypt's past through enriching content, interviews, courses lectures - and enriched small group Egypt tours. Dynamic, engaging and inspirational, she has been asked to speak to international groups around the world, from Britain and France to Hong Kong.

She holds a master’s degree in Egyptology from the University of Toronto and has excavated at the ancient Greek site of Apollonia Pontica in Bulgaria, and in Egypt at the site of Amarna (Great Aten Temple). For 10 years, Laura has created and led specialized small group educational tours through Egypt and world museums - and has traveled to Egypt more than 15 times.

Laura is a dynamic and in-demand lecturer on ancient civilizations and has taught across North America at museums, historical societies, and academic conferences. She is a popular speaker amongst Later Life Learning Institutes associated with U of T, York University, Ryerson, and Trent.


Expert in Business, Happiness and Leadership 

Jessica Weiss

Jessica has spent the last 15 years doing endless research, speaking to thousands of people, all about happiness. Her work brings positive psychology tools and academic research to organizations across the United States. In her work, Jessica shares powerful information from psychology, neuroscience, social science as well as her own practical experience thatshows how happiness leads to success in life and at work.


She has helped thousands of people find more happiness at work and helped leaders and executive teams learn how to lead with the tools necessary to drive happiness productivity, engagement and performance. Her clients include Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, Coca Cola, LVMH, Hearst, American Express and more.

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