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Dok Bru at #TedXDiliman

It’s been a week since I spoke at #TedXDiliman. Yesterday, I got this lovely email from the Vice President for Academic Affairs of the University of the Philippines. A blogging prompt!



It was at the Gawad Pangulo Competition for Progressive Teaching and Learning competition that I met Alyssa who then led me to Gigo Alampay of who organizes #TedXDiliman. I met with Gigo in May and we discussed what I could talk about. I told him I was going to the Doctors 2.0 and You meeting in Paris to talk on social media and healthcare and I could probably talk about that too at #TedXDiliman. I promised to email him a talk outline in July. In return, he emailed me some speaker tips. It’s too long to share here but I found the following noteworthy –

  • Think of your talk less as a speech and more of the start of a conversation.
  • You may speak in English, Filipino or Taglish – whatever you’re more comfortable with.
  • Please feel free to take emotional risks.


To prepare, I read Talk Like Ted by Carmine Gallo … twice!


I agonized over the images in my presentation. I read Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery by Garr Reynolds years back. I edited my Keynote mercilessly, as I did my speech.


Here’s what made the final cut –


Taking a tip from Scott Berkun’s Confessions of a Public Speaker, I visited the auditorium the afternoon before so I could become familiar with the stage set-up.



And the day finally came! Here’s me and the hubby waiting for #TedXDiliman to start last October 11 at the UP School of Economics auditorium. It was my first time to wear an over the ear microphone. It was a divaesque experience!




The theme was Paths Less Traveled.  I was fourth in the program for the Technology section. I was nervous coming after Mike Swift who free style rapped his talk. The audience were clapping and waving their hands. How can A Doctor on Facebook compare?




Then it was my turn! I’ll update this post with the YouTube link once I have it so you can see for yourself. My parents and sons watched me on the live stream. posted a summary of my talk last October 14 – TedXDiliman: A doctor, graphic novelist and chef on beating the odds in their paths less traveled. 


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I met several people during the breaks. Some expressed interest in my Dok Bru Facebook page. Some shook my hand to congratulate me and asked for my autograph (gosh!). But what was heartwarming was everyone encouraged me to continue.

At one of the breaks, I grabbed the opportunity to have a picture taken with Ambeth Ocampo. I regret that I forgot to bring some of his books that my Dad owned for Ambeth’s autograph. He is one of my Dad’s favorite authors. He told me he would copy me and try posting in Facebook in Filipino too. Wow!


When the program ended, I had pictures taken with two of my students in the audience.

This is James, a medical intern from the UP College of Medicine. He is one of several students I have mentored with my husband, since their first year of medical school.


This is Gilbert, a nurse and one of my graduate students in the MS Health Informatics program of UP Manila.


I will always be grateful for this opportunity. Thanks to Gigo & Alyssa Alampay and everyone who contributed to #TedXDiliman! Truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience to have shared the stage with these achievers!



Sights And Sounds/ TedX Diliman 2015 by News5Philippines


Let me end with a quote from Presentation Zen –

“This is the moment — this is the most important moment right now. Which is: We are about contribution. That’s what our job is. It’s not about impressing people. It’s not about getting the next job. It’s about contributing something.”

— Benjamin Zander


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