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The Emory Wheel TEDX

Wednesday, November 30, 2016



By Niraj Naik & aditya prakash Staff Writers From Nov. 18 to 20, TEDxEmory hosted a series of events with themes ranging from climate change to mental health as part of their TEDxYouth series. The talks showcased relevant, contentious and relatable topics for college students. As events were held throughout the weekend, it meant that more students were able to partake in discussions about issues emphasized by TEDxYouth. Climate ChaNGe Set in the Math and Science Center’s planetarium on the evening of Nov. 18, the TEDx event on climate change showcased a series of videos, accompanied by a talk from College sophomore Angela Jiang. Merging climate change with the recent presidential election, Jiang brought to the table the idea that global warming is a stoppable danger. “Do not let politics be a blocker for any sort of optimism,” Jiang said. She argued that regardless of our politicians’ views, changes to combat climate change can still be made. Some videos to fully illustrate the problem of global warming, including one from Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth,” followed Jiang’s talk. “An Inconvenient Truth” supported the urgency of climate change, portraying a variety of engaging and effective information on the issue. soCial justiCe TEDx members created a relaxed atmosphere filled with ambient music, plenty of sweets and casual chatter at the social justice event, which was held outside of the Anthropology Building the evening of Nov. 18. Using videos ranging from a Buzzfeed interview with a gender nonconforming parent to a TED talk by a transgender Filipino model, College sophomore Kenny Igarza illustrated that discrimination can take many forms. Thus, activists should work to counteract the labels that society impresses on people. “Everybody needs to be aware that there are social justice issues on campus,” Igarza said. The night also housed discussion, with people opening up about their own lives and personal struggles. Poetry, anecdotes and reflections by audience members were also integral to the event, allowing audience members to easily see how social injustice is ubiquitous, even in a school as diverse as Emory. meNtal health In White Hall 208, Emory Dark Arts collaborated with Residence Life from Complex Hall and The Pulse to put on a two-hour performance titled “Mental Health and, well, Being” Saturday, Nov. 19 at 7 p.m. “The event was designed to just be a blank space platform for students to take the opportunity to, in whatever way felt best for them, express experiences that have otherwise been invisible or stigmatized,” College senior Nathaniel Sawyer, an event speaker and organizer, said. For some, the event exceeded their expectations. “Coming in, I didn’t really know what to expect but … people were just able to openly talk about their experiences,” College junior Sundus Tameez said. “In my past three years,

I haven’t been able to attend an event of this nature or really [have] this open of a forum.” Regardless of the format, each performance concluded with a similar message: we deserve support too. As Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) at Emory has been overstaffed this semester, the event articulated that students need more mental health support on campus. Sawyer mentioned that an 1836 Dinner would take place this Wednesday, Nov. 28 which will allow students to voice their concerns about mental health services at Emory to a CAPS senior staff member. ato speakeasy Alpha Tau Omega (ATO) and TEDx collaborated again this year on the rebranded Speakeasy, previously known as Salon. The fraternity, known for sponsoring arts events, hosted several different speakers who covered diverse topics including local ecosystems, eating disorders and self-expression. College senior Bethany Studnicky spoke at the event about her work as an artist in relationship to her mental health. “It was the first time I’ve ever actually shared that on a public stage … it was nice for me to be able to expand upon the inspiration and the meaning behind my artwork rather than just the artwork itself at face value,” Studnicky said in an interview with the Wheel after her speech. Although the audience consisted of roughly 100 people, speakers were able to talk about their passions in a very relaxed manner due to the event’s location. College sophomore and ATO brother Jake Gruber, who helped plan the event, said that fraternities can facilitate events such as TEDxYouth, which can stimulate student discussion. “We thought we might as well bring it in here and allow ourselves to be exposed to all these different ideas and perspective[s],” Gruber said. “It’s just an eye-opening experience and it allows our minds to expand, perspectives to be opened to and allow[s] for a more difficult conversation to be had on Emory’s campus.” Gruber said that he is excited for ATO to partner with TEDx in the future. “I’m looking forward to [the] very next semester when we will be able to create an even better version of Speakeasy,” Gruber said. r athskellar Comedy improV troupe The Rathskellar Comedy Improv Troupe hosted a question-and-answer session at Peet’s Coffee Sunday, Nov. 20. The group performed a few example skits and explained how they learned the art of improv and what the art means to them. “Improv focuses so much on building relationships and in order to have a really quality scene; you need to have a bond established [with your teammates],” College senior Michael Green said. “In any tough situation you’re going through, it’s helpful to have somebody there.” In such a relaxed setting with such easy going people, the event was a relieving break from what were otherwise serious events throughout the weekend. — Contact Niraj Naik at and Aditya Prakash at

a nmol mahtani/ContributinG

Latte art brings some style to the hot drinks at the Dancing Goat (left) and Taproom (r iGht).

A Guide To the Most ‘Brew’-tiful Cafes By aNmol mahtaNi Contributing Writer

Typical college students wake up, slam their alarm clock, throw on clothes and grab their Emory card to purchase their first, most essential nutrient of the day — caffeine. From the moment they take their first sip of coffee, they are reassured that they can handle the day, or at the least manage to stay awake during their first class. For me, the magic of coffee doesn’t evolve from the taste nor the vigilance rewarded from consumption, but rather through the experience. Given a choice, I would much rather sip on a vanilla latte in a nearby coffee shop than anxiously chug standard coffee in Club Libs or fight for a table in Kaldi’s or the on-campus Starbucks. The beauty beyond coffee shops, as a concept, is that anything is possible. Beyond the Emory bubble, there are higher chances of making new friends, receiving job offers or even reducing the seemingly interminable pile of schoolwork. Here are a handful of my favorite coffee shops near campus:

leave you warm and satiated, the iced coffees and lattes from Dancing Goats leave the remnants of a suboptimal, milky-water aftertaste, rather than the savory, desired flavor of coffee. The coffee shop, styled with a modern finish and the playlist consisting of mostly Latin music, continuously attracts its customers with its notorious sugarcoated donuts and morning pastries. Conversely, this coffee shop may be better more of a grab-and-go location, rather than a place to sit down for longer periods of time since the amount of seating options and outlets are limited. Dancing Goats has a second location at Ponce City Market where seating is more readily available and the tastefully furnished outdoor ambience attracts customers. However, if you are in a crunch for time or don’t want to drive as far, Decatur’s Dancing Goats fulfills the basic needs. Comfort: 2/5 Ambience: 4/5 Accessibility and Amenities: 1/5 Coffee Satisfaction Rating: 3.7/5

favorite location to do work. This brightly lit café, illuminated by LED lights and artwork, gives you the most bang for your buck. The richly flavored coffee comes in large quantities at a reasonable price: for four dollars, you can either purchase an entire vat of drip coffee or a teapot filled with warm water and fresh tea leaves (and a free re-steep). The endless variety of drinks caters to several types of people. Taproom serves coffee, drip coffee, tea and beer. Although Taproom does not serve proper meals, the store offers snacks and pastries, and other restaurants are located within walking distance. Taproom reminds me of the library with the vibrant, white walls and the tenacity of the other customers working on their assignments minus the contagious anxiety found at the library. This is the place to go if you plan on working in one location for several hours. Comfort: 4/5 Ambience: 5/5 Accessibility and Amenities: 5/5 Coffee Satisfaction Rating: 5/5

Good k arma Coffee house ChoColaté Coffee ChocoLaté is the closest coffee shop to Emory’s campus, lodged between the local record store and Saigon Cafe. From the moment you step in, you are reminded of the familiar setup akin to the set of Central Perk from the famous TV show, Friends. ChocoLaté seems to be the ideal location for friends to meet and chat for a few minutes, but it can be challenging to study there at certain hours of the day due to the noisiness. Although the background noise may make it difficult to concentrate on schoolwork, the friendly crowd paired with the café’s dark ambience and eclectic, tasteful music make for a small, cozy shop. Chocolaté’s coffee selection is tasteful, but in my opinion, the best item on the menu is the Café Romina. Unfortunately, the cappuccinos and lattes taste as though they come from a vending machine. Several pastries offered at the café are provided by local farmers and are switched weekly. If you are interested in a study site with dark, earthy vibes close enough so you don’t miss your classes, make sure to swing by ChocoLaté. Comfort: 4/5 Ambience: 3/5 Accessibility and Amenities: 5/5 Coffee Satisfaction Rating: 2/5 daNCiNG Goats Coffee Bar (deCatur loCatioN) The Batdorf and Bronson coffee selection at Dancing Goats will leave you itching for more. The coffee quality is pristine, and the latte art will excite all of your Snapchat friends. Unfortunately, the colder the beverages are, the less satisfactory. Although the hot beverages at Dancing Goats

refuGe Coffee Co. Ignore what Starbucks says; Good Karma Coffee House offers the best pumpkin spice latte in town. Located in the Avondale Estates, Good Karma prepares coffees with organic, unprocessed ingredients. The coffee shop prides itself on the motto “we eat free.” The franchise serves a variety of delicious pastries and aromatic breakfast items without gluten, egg or soy. The ingredients used in the food and coffee are also provided by local farmers, rather than the average commercialized establishment, which is what makes the pastries taste so good. Although Good Karma may be one of the furthest coffee shops on this list, their Instagram account is updated daily to convince coffee consumers to make the lengthy venture. The Good Karma employees showcase the menu and freshly baked pastries daily. The hidden spot is lauded for the selection friendly for those folk with allergies, yet is humbled by the average quality and presentation of the regular coffee items. From my experience, Good Karma’s vanilla latte tasted below satisfactory and lacks the basic presentation of latte art, and the regular coffee is exactly that: regular. Additionally, the number of tables and charging outlets may be abundant, but the downfall of Good Karma are its limited hours of operation. Usually, the café is only open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Comfort: 4/5 Ambience: 3.5/5 Accessibility and Amenities: 5/5 Coffee Satisfaction Rating: 4/5

This is the ultimate coffee stop for the caffeine-addicted philanthropist. Located in Clarkston, Refuge Coffee Co. serves coffee from a red coffee truck. Finding parking is extremely convenient, and the outdoor seating is scenic. However, it is the employees that make the company special. Newly arrived immigrants are employed at the truck, allowing them to earn money and learn English. Apart from helping the community and receiving service with a friendly smile, you will be served delicious coffee and pastries. On a first purchase, customers may also receive a free coffee coupon. Comfort: 4/5 Ambience: 5/5 Accessibility and Amenities: 4/5 Coffee Satisfaction Rating: 5/5 CoNClusioN Atlanta is a quickly growing culinary hub, with trendy new coffee shops popping up on every corner. Although it may be easy to rush into the nearest Starbucks, Caribou Coffee or any other chain, consider embarking on a caffeine adventure and supporting local businesses that offer high quality coffee. This list is by no means comprehensive; other coffee shops that were not mentioned in this article include Octane, Hodgepodge or Drip. While venturing to off-campus coffee shops may not be the easiest on your wallet, studying in a novel location surrounded by hearty beverages is definitely rewarding.

taproom Coffee aNd Beer Taproom Coffee and Beer is my

— Contact Anmol Mahtani at