PVAMU does it again: TEDxPVAMU 2022, ‘Becoming an Outlier’
TEDxPVAMU presenter and PVAMU alumna Ivy Walls. YouTube screen grab.

Prairie View A&M University is at it again, coming back this year to host its second TEDx talk, officially named ‘TEDXPVAMU 2022 – Becoming an Outlier.’

The theme for this year’s PVAMU TEDx talk comes from the national best0selling author Malcolm Gladwell’s book “Outliers” which just so happens to be required reading within the Honors Program at PVAMU.

“The goal of this event is to deconstruct the false narrative placed in African Americans and other marginalized communities, while also showcasing Prairie View to the world,” said Taylon Owens, founding organizer for TEDxPVAMU. “Last year we focused on ‘Unlocking Your Mind,’ and this year we are highlighting what it means to become an outlier.”

Kendall Lemons, a PVAMU senior mathematics and mechanical engineering major, said attending last year’s TEDxPVAMU event inspired him to not only attend the 2022 version, but to join in and become one of the organizers.

“Last year, I got to witness the time and dedication devoted to creating Prairie View’s first-ever TEDx Talk,” said Lemons. “It was this same talk that brought me here today as this year’s TEDx organizer.”

Lemons said he was proud of the work students, faculty and other school administrators at PVAMU put in to make the events back-to-back successes.  

“History was made as Prairie View hosted its first-ever TEDx event last year. As just the second school in the A&M System and one of only a handful of HBCUs, we wanted to keep the momentum by adding a second event this year. This year, we’re sharing the idea of standing out from the crowd and being different. We’re sharing the idea of becoming an outlier,” said Lemons.

Presenters included Maia McFarlin (“Failing to Fail”), Jared Bryson (“Pushin’ People), Chayse Lavallais (“Knowing Success”) and Ivy Walls (“Planting Growth”).