18 episodes

Travel ignites change. It helps us identify what’s important and empowers us to dissect and challenge the status quo. Join Benjamin Morse, returned Peace Corps volunteer and world traveller, as he speaks with a wide range of guests who’ve reinvented themselves through exploration. Benjamin brings a personalized approach by offering his own perspectives as a father, ultra-endurance athlete, higher education professional, and plant-based individual. Wherever you are on your pursuit of greatness and authenticity, this podcast will embolden your dreams and inspire creativity. More at Techawat.com Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/techawat-benjamin-morse/support

Techawat with Benjamin Morse Benjamin Morse

    • Society & Culture
    • 5.0 • 5 Ratings

Travel ignites change. It helps us identify what’s important and empowers us to dissect and challenge the status quo. Join Benjamin Morse, returned Peace Corps volunteer and world traveller, as he speaks with a wide range of guests who’ve reinvented themselves through exploration. Benjamin brings a personalized approach by offering his own perspectives as a father, ultra-endurance athlete, higher education professional, and plant-based individual. Wherever you are on your pursuit of greatness and authenticity, this podcast will embolden your dreams and inspire creativity. More at Techawat.com Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/techawat-benjamin-morse/support

    Elly Daftuar: Cultivating Community Through Art

    Elly Daftuar: Cultivating Community Through Art

    Elly Daftuar is a musician and multimedia artist from Ypsilanti, Michigan. She performs with many musical groups in southeast Michigan and has a long history of designing online experiences for universities, small businesses, musicians, and artists. 

    In today's conversation, Elly treats us with a live performance of "Burn Out the Night" from her 2018 Album Hz Donut with the band Tanager. After this sublime intro, we explore the topics of community, connection, artistic pursuit and international travel. Elly is one of the those artists that is extremely talented across an array of artistic mediums and someone who I have the utmost admiration for. I hope you enjoy this one! 

    To connect and support Elly: 

    Bandcamp: https://tanager.bandcamp.com

    Instagram: @elecaster

    Support the Show:


    Visit: www.techawat.com 
    Instagram: @techawat_with_benjamin_morse, @benjamin_august_blair  

    Original Music by Elly Daftuar, connect on Instagram: @elecaster

    Logo by Jeff Butler, connect on Instagram: @butlejef2


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    This episode is sponsored by
    · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app

    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/techawat-benjamin-morse/support

    • 1 hr 17 min
    Marcus Hall: Intersectionality in Travel

    Marcus Hall: Intersectionality in Travel

    Today’s guest is Marcus Hall. Marcus is a stunning and eloquent storyteller, who has used travel and connection as a means to understand himself and the world around him. I had the opportunity to work with Marcus at the University of Michigan, and it has been an amazing learning experience for me to unpack his story and continue to learn from him each time we connect.

    In this episode Marcus opens up about his journeys abroad, starting at the age of 17 and building from there. We discuss second language acquisition and different ways people can learn a new language   and dive deeper into new experiences along the way. Marcus offers insight into the concept of intersectionality, which is ostensibly a analytical framework for understanding how aspects of a person's social and political identities combine to create different modes of discrimination and privilege depending on the context.

    Marcus spent the past 15 years engaged in international travel, with his first trip abroad to Eindhoven, in the Netherlands in 2007. Since then, he’s either lived in or travelled to an array of countries around the world, be it Argentina, Uruguay, Peru, Portugal, Italy, the UK, France, Germany, Denmark, Spain, Canada, and South Africa. We dive into a few of these chapters during this conversation, and unearth the particularities behind these experiences.

    Marcus is the first in his family to attend higher education, both for undergrad and graduate school, and the first in his immediate family to travel internationally. Marcus dispels myths of travel and offers any eager explorer a roadmap for adventure, self-growth, and transformation. This episode is a bit longer than my typical show, but I’d encourage each of you to see this one through, whether you break it up, or listen in one go, Marcus certainly has a lot to offer!

    Connect with Marcus:


    Instagram: @marcusdelmundo
    LinkedIn: Marcus Hall

    Support the Show:


    Visit: www.techawat.com 
    Instagram: @techawat_with_benjamin_morse, @benjamin_august_blair  

    Original Music by Elly Daftuar, connect on Instagram: @elecaster

    Logo by Jeff Butler, connect on Instagram: @butlejef2


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    This episode is sponsored by
    · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app

    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/techawat-benjamin-morse/support

    • 2 hr
    Drew Chafetz: Love Fútbol

    Drew Chafetz: Love Fútbol

    Drew Chafetz has a unique passion for both soccer and social enterprise and has become one of the foremost experts in engaging and mobilizing communities around the world through sport. Drew is the co-founder and CEO of love.fútbol, a nonprofit that partners with communities worldwide to create, reclaim, and redefine sports spaces as lasting platforms for social change.

    In this episode, Drew takes us into the beautiful origin story of love.fútbol, which is intimately tied into Drew’s personal experiences traveling the world as a young soccer player. He describes a series of life-changing experiences while living abroad, specifically around soccer, that ultimately led to the creation of his impactful organization.

    Through the organization’s award-winning methodology, local residents from over fifty communities across 5 continents have dedicated over 70,000 volunteer hours to plan, organize, build, and maintain inclusive and inspiring sports spaces designed to bring communities together and ensure play across generations. Drew’s unique ability to share his philosophy around this work makes this episode special and a must-listen.

    The impact of his work cannot be understated, Tens of thousands of children play on love.fútbol sports spaces every day. love.fútbol sponsors include ESPN, Coca-Cola, Disney, Under Armour, Unilever, UEFA, Manchester City, and the Pincus Family Foundation, which funded love.fútbol’s first projects in the United States in 2019.

    I’m excited to share this one with all of you footballers, soccer players, sports fanatics, and international development workers across the globe. So let’s lace up and step on the metaphorical pitch with the one and only Drew Chafetz.

    To connect with Drew:


    https://www.lovefutbol.org/
    https://www.instagram.com/love.futbol/
    https://www.instagram.com/drewchafetz/
    https://www.facebook.com/lovefutbol/

    Support the Show:


    Visit: www.techawat.com 
    Instagram: @techawat_with_benjamin_morse, @benjamin_august_blair  

    Original Music by Elly Daftuar, connect on Instagram: @elecaster

    Logo by Jeff Butler, connect on Instagram: @butlejef2



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    This episode is sponsored by
    · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app

    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/techawat-benjamin-morse/support

    • 1 hr 19 min
    Keesa Johnson: Designing Equitable Food Systems

    Keesa Johnson: Designing Equitable Food Systems

    Keesa Johnson is shaping the future of food and co-designing agri-food systems with black and brown farmers across Michigan and beyond. In today's episode, I speak with Keesa about her experiences studying and practicing participatory "21st Century" design within the context of the wicked problem of equity and access in food systems. This conversation has a little bit of everything, we talk about foundational design principles, along with several core tenants of participatory design such as diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice. Keesa is not only an amazing storyteller, she's passionate about her work and highly skilled at what she does. I'm excited to share a bit of this wisdom with all of you today. I hope you tune into this conversation as we collectively reimagine the food system and create equitable, just, and liberating ecosystems through the lens of integrative and participatory design.

    Keesa is a luminary in the the design space, having been the first black female to graduate from the Masters of Design in Integrative Design (MDes) program at the University of Michigan. While studying in the MDes program, she won the prestigious MLK Spirt Award and was named as one of the top 50 designers in the country by Graphic Design USA (article here). She's currently the DEI Manager at the University of Michigan Campus Farm, and the Racial Equity Chair at the Washtenaw Food Policy Council in Michigan. 

    To connect with Keesa and to learn more:


    LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/keesavjohnson/ 
    A Living Learning Lab For Equity: Keesa Johnson
    Article: Redesigning Online Food Consumption to Enhance Racial and Social Inclusion Through Generative Production Networks 

    Support the Show:


    Visit: www.techawat.com 
    Instagram: @techawat_with_benjamin_morse, @benjamin_august_blair  

    Original Music by Elly Daftuar, connect on Instagram: @elecaster

    Logo by Jeff Butler, connect on Instagram: @butlejef2




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    This episode is sponsored by
    · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app

    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/techawat-benjamin-morse/support

    • 1 hr 10 min
    Dr. Abdul El-Sayed: Identity, Travel, and Healing Politics

    Dr. Abdul El-Sayed: Identity, Travel, and Healing Politics

    Dr. Abdul El-Sayed is a physician, epidemiologist, educator, author, speaker, and podcast host. We first met back in 2017 while I was competing in a pitch competition for a start-up I had at the time, Abdul was the keynote speaker. He told an incredible story about his time as Detroit’s Health Director, where he often worked directly with kids who faced uncertain futures because of the health risks present in the communities. From that moment on, I’ve been a huge fan of Abdul’s work and his overall outlook on life. Better yet, only a few days prior to that speech he announced his historic candidacy for the Governor of Michigan, which would have seen him become America’s first Muslim governor. While he didn’t win this race, he earned tremendous support from progressives all over the country led by Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and touched the lives of thousands of people across Michigan and beyond with his vision for a better future and his unique brand of progressivism. Abdul and I have stayed in touch over the years and I’m always inspired by his ability to capture and articulate the moment, and help chart a collective path forward.

    In this episode, we talk about the role that travel plays in developing and defining one’s identity. He shares his experiences traveling between the United States and Egypt as a child and how these trips continue to shape his life today. We also talk about his time living in the United Kingdom as a graduate student, and what lessons from abroad he’s been able to bring home to Michigan. We touch on his 2018 run for the Governor of Michigan, his reflections and current thoughts on the Covid-19 pandemic, and what the future of travel looks like as we begin to engage in exploration again. We end the conversation in a similar manner to when I first met Abdul, with him speaking about the future of the progressive movement and where he views his role going forward. 

    Follow along with Abdul's work:

    His newsletter, "The Incision," cuts to the heart of the trends shaping our moment. He is a commentator at CNN. His two books include "Healing Politics," calling for a politics of empathy to cure our epidemic of insecurity, and "Medicare for All: A Citizen’s Guide" with Dr. Micah Johnson. He is the host of “America Dissected,” a podcast by Crooked Media, which goes beyond the headlines to explore what really matters for our health. He is a Senior Fellow at the FXB Center for Health & Human Rights at the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, and a Scholar-in-Residence at Wayne State University and American University, teaching at the intersection of public health, public policy, and politics. He is formerly the Health Director for the City of Detroit and candidate for governor of Michigan in 2018. Follow Abdul on Instagram and Twitter. 

    Support the Show:


    Visit: www.techawat.com 
    Paypal: paypal.me/BenjaminMorse   
    Instagram: @techawat_with_benjamin_morse, @benjamin_august_blair  

    Original Music by Elly Daftuar, connect on Instagram: @elecaster

    Logo by Jeff Butler, connect on Instagram: @butlejef2






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    This episode is sponsored by
    · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app

    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/techawat-benjamin-morse/support

    • 35 min
    Vitor Machado Lira: The Vegan Revolution and a Plant-Powered Life

    Vitor Machado Lira: The Vegan Revolution and a Plant-Powered Life

    Exploring a plant-based or vegan diet? Looking for ways to reduce your impact on the environment? This episode is for you.  Born and raised in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Vitor is a passionate advocate for environmental conservation, community empowerment, and sustainable development. Vitor grew up a wildlife aficionado and football fan, and in 2008 at the age of 17, he left his home country to experience one year of high school at a boarding school in Massachusetts. One year turned into two, as the beautiful game and the outdoors helped him connect with students from all over the world, better understand diverse perspectives, his origin story, creativity, and self. Since then, he’s continued crafting his journey in the United States through higher education, the job market, and any opportunity to fine-tune his abilities to help people and animals wherever he goes. In 2010, Vitor earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Philosophy and Religious Studies at Marist College, where he studied how humans think and interact with each other and the natural world. In 2014, he earned a Master of Science Degree in Natural Resources and Environment from the University of Michigan, where he pursued two concentrations in Environmental Justice and Behavior, Education, and Communication, and was introduced to veganism in 2015. In our conversation, we talk about Vitor’s family life in Brazil and we confront a complex history of colonialism around the world. We also talk about higher education, and that learning has played throughout his life. We wrap up this conversation with a deep dive into the vegan, or plant-based lifestyle. 

    Resources Mentioned: 


    https://www.richroll.com/  
    https://gamechangersmovie.com/ 
    https://www.nomeatathlete.com/  
    https://www.cowspiracy.com/  
    https://www.seaspiracy.org/ 
    https://nutritionstudies.org/ 

    To connect with Vitor: 


    Instagram: @vimachli 
    LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/vimachli/  

    Support the Show: Paypal: paypal.me/BenjaminMorse    

    Instagram: @techawat_with_benjamin_morse, @benjamin_august_blair   

    Original Music by Elly Daftuar, connect on Instagram: @elecaster 

    Logo by Jeff Butler, connect on Instagram: @butlejef2


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    This episode is sponsored by
    · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app

    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/techawat-benjamin-morse/support

    • 1 hr 43 min

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