Manship student chosen as TEDxLSU 2016 speaker


Manship senior Bianca Smith has been selected as a speaker for TEDXLSU, taking place on Saturday, March 5, 2016, in the LSU Union Theater. Smith is a marketing assistant for student media and a writer for Legacy Magazine.


TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to “ideas worth spreading,” supporting world-changing ideas, connections and dialogue. TEDx programs intend to bring people together at local levels and share ideas in a way that sparks conversation and connection. It began in 2012 and is championed by LSU’s Communication across the Curriculum program because of its commitment to community and communication.


Tickets for the event will go on sale later this year. For updates on TEDxLSU, visit


How did you first find out about TEDXLSU?

I first found out about TEDxLSU last year when I saw an advertisement for openings in the creative team in Manship Weekly. I applied and got a position in the public relations and social media team for the 2015 event.


What initially inspired you to apply to be a TEDXLSU speaker?

While working the event, I was able to see talks presented by Rashaud Red and Kurt Ristroph who are both students. I suddenly realized if they could do a TED Talk and still be in school then I can do one to. After the event I asked one of the event coordinators what would I have to do if I wanted to give a TED Talk next year and she gave me all of the information I needed. At the time, however, I didn’t know what I wanted to speak on but I knew I wanted to give one before I graduated.


What was your reaction when you found out you were chosen as a speaker?

Words could not describe how excited I was! I practically screamed! I immediately called my mom and dad and told them the news.


What will you discuss in your TEDXLSU talk?

I can’t give too many details away, but I can say that it’s about comic books.


How has being a student in the Manship School and student media prepared you for this?

Being a part of the Manship School and student media has prepared me for this moment by molding myself as my own brand and helping to establish myself as a comic book writer. I am also grateful for the all of the public speaking skills I learned as a Manship student.


Anything else you would like to add?

My experience so far as a TED speaker has been absolutely incredible. I have met so many amazing people within the Baton Rouge community and learned a lot about myself in the process. Everyone in the TEDx creative team has been so kind and they are one of the brightest and most hard working people that I know. I am so grateful for them and their part in making my experience with TEDxLSU unforgettable.