Offering pizza and welcoming both students and faculty, the Academic Council works on hosting annual Hockatalks. Hockatalks have been going on for four years, always planned once a year during the beginning of April. This year it was planned on April 9, with an audience of around 35 people.
Anyone who responds to Meghna Jain’s email, the president of the Academic Council, is welcome to talk. The council plans the lineup to ensure a variety of good topics are presented.
This year’s lineup included: Kate Woodhouse, Inez Johnson and Gina Miele who spoke about equitable education, Eliana Goodman and Elizabeth Roosevelt who discussed their experiences with Type One diabetes and Hope Fu who shared her summer research on asteroids and five other unique presentations.
Hockatalks were created four years ago by the president at the time, Catherine Jiang. The idea of this came from TED talks. Jiang thought it was an intriguing idea to show interesting topics to students created by fellow students. These topics could include anything from cool extracurriculars, summer research or anything that the students are passionate to talk about. It is designed to be a place where anyone from Upper School could express something meaningful to others in the community.
Meghna Jain, a senior and president of the Academic Council, organizes the event with the rest of the council members.
“I think it’s honestly really cool to see all of the wonderful and diverse things people are interested in. I love hearing people talk about things they are passionate about, whether its a historical event, conspiracy theory or scientific experiment. I always walk away knowing more about not only their topic but also who the presenter is as a person,” Jain said.
Elizabeth Roosevelt, a sophomore, spoke at the event about having type one diabetes.
Partnered with Eliana Goodman, they teamed up to discuss what it is like living with type one. The duo brought different technology devices that help them with their everyday life. One interesting gadget that they discussed was Dexcom, which is attached to their arm and sends signals to their phones.
“I wanted to share a little about my life that a lot of people don’t know about,” Roosevelt said. “I wanted other people to gain a new perspective on some of the things their classmates talked about and hopefully learn something new.”
Inez Johnson, a sophomore, discussed her education program in hopes of inspiring students and possibly recruiting them.
She had been a part of the winning group from the United to Lead program, splitting a $1000 prize to gain $500 to implement her solution to an education problem in Dallas public schools.
“I wanted to share this awesome experience with people and hopefully recruit some people to get involved with my new program,” Johnson said. “I wanted other people to learn about our power to make real change.”
Story by Julia Donovan
Photos by Shinjini Mukherjee