Hi there!

I’m Liesl Ulrich-Verderber, EWC’s COO, and the Founder of EWCed and Amazing World Media!

After graduating from Harvard University with a degree in architectural design and economics, I started working with Ever Widening Circles as our COO and took up our mission to expand into education with EWCed in 2018, and explore how we could bring positive media to healthcare in 2019 with Amazing World Media.

My Background

Most of my undergraduate design training at Harvard University was through the Harvard Graduate School of Design. There, I honed my design skills and representation techniques, always with a flair for design that filled the mantra “Is it novel? Is it useful?”

I’d like to think that I have taken a bit of that mindset with me here at EWC, EWCed, and Amazing World Media.

As a professional photographer since the age of 14, and have had a lifelong passion for finding beauty in the world. Now, I use those same instincts as a writer and curator for Ever Widening Circles.

A Passion for Education

While I still spend a lot of time keeping the show running here on Ever Widening Circles, I am now collaborating with educators on EWCed. Over at EWCed, we curate content from Ever Widening Circles for educators to use in the classroom. Our mission at EWCed is to inspire students’ curiosity, connect them to the wider world, and give them a sense of what’s possible. We want to ignite possibility in our education systems with the knowledge that it is still an amazing world.

I have had a life-long passion for education. After serving on the school board as a high schooler, I have been an advocate for customized learning plans, and have seen some of the possibilities for change that are available in our education systems. At Harvard, I designed and taught leadership curriculum and classes to middle and high school students through the Leadership Institute at Harvard College. As we designed EWCed, these experiences teaching a diverse range of students with a video and discussion-based approach to learning have been a major source of inspiration.

Image: Liesl as a kid playing teacher wearing glasses

As a child, I loved to “teach” classes on the various things I’d learned watching PBS documentaries. As a teacher, I would always wear my cat eyeglasses and have my grandfather’s extendable pointer in hand.

When I’m not running around talking to educators and students (which is my favorite part of my job) I’m back in the Ever Widening Circles office pulling whatever hat we need for me that day off the rack and tackling problems from marketing to microwave malfunctions.

In my free time, I am an aspiring—but more often floundering—outdoor enthusiast, a camera-toting traveler, and a global story seeker.

-Liesl

“Laughter is the shortest distance between two people.”-Victor Borge

Liesl can be found on Instagram @Liesl.UV

Author's Articles

10 minutes

[ ]

Start Small, Dream Big: The Secret to Accomplishing Life-Changing Goals

By

How do we achieve even our loftiest goals? At 19 years old, Dave Jacka was left with only 6% of his physical function after a motorcycle accident. 25 years later, he became the first pilot with quadriplegia to fly around Australia solo! The story of how he got there has insights for us all!

Read More

9 minutes

[ ]

The Largest, Most Viewed Paintings In the World That No One Knows About

By

What’s your favorite old movie? Chances are there’s one character that connects all of our beloved old films. They are always there, we just never noticed. Any guesses who it is?

Read More

15 minutes

[ ]

All Hail the Great Hellbender Salamander!

By

Snot otter, lasagna lizard, grampus, whatever you call it, this gigantic, slimy, and loveable creature could be the unlikely superhero saving the world’s amphibians. How, you ask? Well, let’s get to know them a little better and find out!

Read More

9 minutes

[ ]

Medical Device to Fashion Statement: The Amazing History of Glasses

By

In the past few decades, glasses have become a fashion statement and form of expression. But how did they make the transition from a medical device to a stylish accessory? And can we transform prosthetics, wheelchairs, and hearing aids in the same creative and widely accepted way?

Read More

8 minutes

[ ]

Helping Students Find Confidence by Helping Others!

By

Could there be a simple way to change the lives of young people around the world? They may be on to something at Tilden Middle School—helping their students build confidence, empathy, and kindness towards other people in just a single day. Here’s how it works! (And how it can benefit you, too!) 

Read More

13 minutes

[ ]

Bike Angels: Competitive Problem-Solving at Its Extreme!

By

What happens when we use fun to inspire people to help the world in their own way? New York City tried out this experiment with their Citi Bike Bike Angels program and the results were, well, unexpectedly enthusiastic!

Read More

23 minutes

[ ]

Is Going Zero Waste Really Possible?

By

Have you seen those people who can fit a year’s worth of garbage into a mason jar? Is that even possible? Meet a family that tried to live zero waste for a month and see how it went!

Read More

6 minutes

[ ]

Transforming Trash into Living Robots!

By

You’ll find a lot of strange things on the streets of New York City, but the fantastical giant robots of Brooklyn RobotWorks will certainly stop you in your tracks. Meet the creative mind behind these incredible, walking works of art made from everyday objects!

Read More

12 minutes

[ ]

How These Successful Coaches Are Helping Us All Unlock Our Full Potential!

By

What if we could unlock 50% more potential from our teams tomorrow? There is a new recipe for success being revealed on the sidelines of major sports teams that can all use to start harnessing this potential. Here’s the secret!

Read More

6 minutes

[ ]

How Do You Find the Right Words for Your Love?

By

Have you ever felt an emotion you didn’t have the words for? This is where the beauty of other languages can step in. When it comes to love, there are a lot of feelings that English sometimes can’t quite express, but other languages have captured that magic!

Read More

6 minutes

[ ]

The Surprising Genius Behind Your To-Go Cup! 

By

There’s a little piece of history sitting right on top of the to-go cup of coffee you grabbed today. The coffee cup lid may seem like a humble piece of human innovation, but it’s got a secret history!

Read More

8 minutes

[ ]

The Tiny Town That Became a Kingdom of Books

By

In the 70s, the UK gained a new, independent kingdom: a kingdom of books! Explore Hay-on-Wye, a tiny town in Wales that is every book lover’s dream!

Read More

15 minutes

[ ]

How Do You Become a World Champion Pizza Spinner?

By

Pizza spinning is mesmerizing, but what if you added fire, multiple flying doughs, and the occasional behind-the-back spin? That’s how world champion spinner Justin Wadstein does it! Get ready—you’ve never seen dough spun quite like this before.

Read More

5 minutes

[ ]

The Fabulous World of Flies!

By

If you like chocolate and avocados, you have flies to thank for it! Flies are everywhere and may be some of the coolest creatures on our planet. So, let’s get to know these remarkable little creatures.

Read More

14 minutes

[ ]

Reinventing Plastic with Methane and Microbes

By

How close are we to reinventing plastic? Well, it looks like a future with easily accessible, truly biodegradable plastics that can replace the harmful plastics we use today is right around the corner—and it uses the power of bacteria! 

Read More

16 minutes

[ ]

Feeding the Soul and Ending Loneliness

By

Can food fight loneliness? In the kitchens of the Healing Meals Community Project, food is giving people a place to come together, work in the service of others, and leave people changed for life!

Read More

10 minutes

[ ]

Indonesia’s Extreme Vespas

By

Here are two words you probably haven’t heard together before: Extreme Vespas. On the streets of Indonesia though, extreme Vespas are pushing art and culture in some wild new directions!

Read More

14 minutes

[ ]

The Bristol Bike Project: Building A Better Future on Two Wheels 

By

What can an old bike do to impact someone’s life? Well, with The Bristol Bike Project, these old, broken bikes, are delivering remarkable new opportunities to those most vulnerable in their communities!

Read More

10 minutes

[ ]

Meet the Couple that Helped Save 10 Million Acres of Patagonia

By

Thanks to the largest private donation of land in history, 10 million acres of land are now protected in Patagonia: one of the most beautiful places on Earth. So, who are these remarkable donors?

Read More

15 minutes

[ ]

This Disney Animator Brings Characters to Life in Virtual Reality! 

By

What if you could step into an entire world created by one of your favorite artists? Here’s a peek at what happens when you mix the wonder of virtual reality with the magic of a Disney animator!

Read More

10 minutes

[ ]

Playing Guitar with Your Toes & More Life Lessons from Mark Goffeney

By

Although Mark Goffeney has no arms, he’s been playing the guitar since age nine. His talents as a musician are incredible, and his insights from a lifetime of performing can inspire us all to embrace our limitations more often!

Read More

19 minutes

[ ]

How to Finish Your To-Do List and Run a Marathon in One Day!

By

Could you check off your entire to-do list in one day? It’s not just possible, you can do it while having fun, doing what you love, and taking time to reflect! Here’s how!

Read More

22 minutes

[ ]

Why We All Need More Awe!

By

Do we already have the key to healing what divides us? The answer is YES, if only we learn to harness the power of awe! Find out how.

Read More

7 minutes

[ ]

How the Joy of Cooking Connects Us Through the Generations

By

Because of this cookbook, thousands of people have gathered together around the world. Now, this iconic book is having a revamp, from none other than the creator’s grandson! Here’s a story that will have you thinking about your own family traditions in a new light.

Read More

8 minutes

[ ]

Giving New Life to Well-Loved Clothes

By

What if you could give old clothes an entirely new life? This was the question Patagonia wanted to tackle as a warehouse of used gear piled up around them. The fix they came up with to keep these garments out of the landfills is a model that changes the future of clothing!

Read More

16 minutes

[ ]

The Discovery that Reshaped Your Family Tree

By

Join a group of courageously curious ordinary people, willing to go deep below the Earth’s surface, to help us meet our cousins: an ancient species of humans who walked alongside us in the not so distant past!

Read More

5 minutes

[ ]

Printing With Your Greatest Catch

By

Can we capture great meals with a piece of art? The ancient Japanese art form of Gyotaku has been memorializing fishermen’s “big catch” for centuries, now the art form has found new meaning in Hawaii in the hands of  Naoki Hayashi.

Read More

26 minutes

[ ]

The Brilliant Mind of a Budding Marine Biologist

By

Unlike many of the other kids who grew up next to one of Europe’s largest nuclear power plant construction projects, Sam looks at the world with a wisdom well beyond his years. His story is a great reminder that our future is in capable hands. 

Read More

[ ]

The Conspiracy Chronicles: Consuming Consciously, December 2019

By

Can what we purchase have a positive impact on the world? Here are some tips on consuming consciously and supporting companies doing good in the world!

Read More