WEEKFour student group hopes to bring TED-style talks to campus every quarter
WEEKFour, a new student group, hosted the first-ever
“TED-style Talks by Fuller Students” at Fuller’s Pasadena campus on April 21.
students were given 20 minutes each to share on a topic they are passionate
about and would like to spread, similar to the format of
the worldwide-known TED Talks. The topics the
students addressed were: finding time to create art when
you’re busy, gender and sexuality, mental illness in the church, and
spirituality as leadership.
was started to give a platform for Fuller students and alumni to share their
passions and “create a space for us to intentionally engage one another,
challenge one another, and encourage one another before we move on from Fuller,”
said School of Theology student Kevin Gonzaga, who co-founded the group along
with School of Theology student Matthew Schuler.
event will be held during the fourth week of each quarter—thus the name “WEEKFour.”
idea for WEEKFour came to Gonzaga while watching a panel discussion Fuller was
hosting with outside speakers. He
realized that he knew at least five fellow students who could have blended into
the panel and spoken just as intelligently and engagingly.
realized that one of our most underused resources at Fuller is our diverse and
experience-rich student body,“ said Gonzaga. “We have students from all over the
world, representing a variety of traditions and viewpoints, and who have had a
variety of ministry and life experiences—we only
have such practical access to this unique community for a few years of our
Lumpkin, a School of Theology alumnus, was the first presenter of the evening,
speaking on “How You Do Art When You’re Busy as Hell.” It is when
you're the most busy that you need art the most, to be able to process, name,
and comprehend your own experience, he said.
down the artificial partitions that separate creative work from the rest of my
life and identity has unlocked fresh possibilities and relationships, and
perhaps most importantly, gives me life, energy, and renewal that sustains other
work,” said Lumpkin. “Building art into your daily life empowers you to express
with depth and nuance the challenging, trying, and
rewarding experiences that make up a life of faithful service to God and God's
Farlow, a School of Theology student, spoke on gender and sexuality, a subject she
is passionate about as she has found herself being restricted in the
church because she is a woman.
was discriminated against in the church more than I was outside,” she said.
“This is because of generations of men and women who are afraid of breaking
Pickett, a School of Psychology student, brought an awareness of the stigma
again mental illness in the church and challenged the audience to
consider ways they can break down this stigma in their local
Gonzaga closed the night by speaking on why he thinks spiritual intimacy is crucial for
lead out of who we are, not what we know, and as Christians our relationship
with God is central to our identity and how we see and relate to others and the
wider world,” he explained. “Because of this reality, Christian leaders must
follow the example of Jesus and continually return to a space where they are in
communion with God and not just busy serving God or studying about God.”