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

13 minutes

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Why Does Bob Ross Continue to Spread So Much Joy?

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Why did Bob Ross and his paintings become so famous? How did such a simple show spread so much joy? Let’s take a deeper look at this joyful permed painter and the lives he’s had an impact on!

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13 minutes

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The Life Changing Work of a Master Craftsman

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Behind the doors of Blue Ox Millworks, Eric Hollenbeck passes down generations of knowledge, instilling a sense of pride and healing with his work. By sharing the love for his craft, this woodworker is helping high schoolers and veterans alike find their own healing.

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18 minutes

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Could Mastering the Art of Asking for Help Change Your Life?

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Asking for help is our ticket to actually making our dreams come true. But why is it so hard?! Here’s a thought leader that will help us see the true value in the ask and give us the courage to just go for it. 

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8 minutes

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Bone Up on Your Skeletal Health!

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Every ten years your skeleton replaces itself! Our bones hold a world of fascinating secrets. Dive in with us to learn more!

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8 minutes

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Transforming Detroit One Beehive at a Time!

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Could vacant lots actually hold the potential to make cities healthier? Take a look at how this couple is transforming Detroit’s many vacant lots into an oasis for urban beekeeping and enriching their community! 

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8 minutes

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How a Bra Company Brought Us to the Moon!

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What do bra manufacturing and the first man to step on the moon have in common? Meet the unsung heroes of the first moon landing and hear the curious tale of how bra technology helped support the astronauts of Apollo 11!

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The Conspiracy Chronicles: Deforestation, September 2019

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What can we do to stop deforestation? Around the globe, deforestation is causing major problems, here’s how you can help keep our forests safe!

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7 minutes

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The Tastiest Way to Save the Planet

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Are you looking for food that’s good for both you and the environment? What if we told you that all of your favorite treats, from protein bars to tacos, can be made with insects! We’re discovering where those feelings of disgust you may be experiencing come from and how eating insects could help the planet. Dare to join us?

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10 minutes

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Change Your Habits By Learning How They Change Your Brain!

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Have a habit you’d like to change? Here’s what you need to know about how your brain works to make it happen! This is a game-changer for expanding your life and possibilities.

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8 minutes

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Sailing Through Space on the Power of the Sun

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We just deployed a technology into space that could revolutionize our exploration of the universe! After generations of thinkers dreamed of a way to sail through space with the power of light, we’ve finally made it happen!

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10 minutes

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What if We Turned Plastic Waste into a Valuable Currency?

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The Plastic Bank is turning plastic into money for people around the globe. This idea has the power to end poverty while saving our oceans!

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14 minutes

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Crafting the Soul of the Spanish Guitar

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At the heart of the music we love is a soul besides that of the musician’s. A guitar is more than just a guitar — it’s made from generations of love and dedication to a craft. Meet the skilled hands behind some of the world’s most beautiful music!

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27 minutes

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Paddling the Depths of Human Connection

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Here’s what is possible when we focus on what we have in common instead of how we differ. Take a look at the experience of the USA Olympic Rafting team when they learned the ropes of a Hawaiian tradition and you’ll see, it’s nothing short of magic.  

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9 minutes

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Conservation Success! How Out of the Box Thinking Saved an Adorable Fox

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Now here’s something to celebrate! A novel model for bringing back a thriving population of an endangered species on our planet! The secret? Take a look at how a new way of thinking saved an adorable species of fox!

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10 minutes

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What Is an Algorithm? And Can We Use Them to Change the World in a Good Way?

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Algorithms are a lot less complicated than you may think! And, with a little understanding, here’s how we can start to reshape the way we use them to create a better future for everyone.

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The Conspiracy Chronicles: Saving Dark Skies, August 2019

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What do we lose when we lose a stary night sky? Dark skies are disappearing around the world, here’s what you can do to improve your health and the planet!

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9 minutes

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Teeth: the Most Underrated Marvel of Nature?

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An insane process took place inside of your skull before you even had a brain. Let’s take a look at these underrated wonders of the human body growing right out of your face!

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30 minutes

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The Remarkable Organization Saving Kenya’s Orphaned Elephants

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Meet the remarkable people behind one of their most successful (and adorable) programs protecting the world’s remaining wildlife, the Elephant Orphanage. For over 40 years the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust has been transforming and inspiring hearts and minds!

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12 minutes

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Experience the Magic When Craftsmanship and Artistry Collide!

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For decades, stained glass craftsman Norbert Sattler has invited artists into his studio to create magnificent works of art. Together, they create pieces that would be impossible without each other’s expertise. Here are some lessons in love and artistry that he’s learned along the way!

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8 minutes

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An Amazing Journey to the 2020 Olympics: An Underdog Story

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Why do we love a good underdog story? Maybe it says a little bit about the way we connect with others through shared determination and grit. If you love to root for the underdog, prepare to meet the Zambian National handball team; a truly inspiring underdog on a journey to the 2020 Olympics.

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12 minutes

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What’s Our Waste Worth? A Fresh Look a the Value of Our World’s Plastic Waste

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What if we saw plastic waste as a valuable commodity and not just trash? The plastics littering our beaches and streets are an untapped resource just waiting to be explored by creative entrepreneurs around the world. Find out how!

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25 minutes

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Empathy is the Renewable Resource We Can Tap Into Now

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What if empathy was at the heart of the solution to changing the divisiveness that feels so dominant now? It turns out empathy isn’t a set trait, it’s something we can learn to develop, and it’s super easy to start! Here’s how you can easily start making a positive change!

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16 minutes

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The Simple Secrets to Bring More Joy to Life!

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Do you want to experience more joy? It’s actually pretty easy to make that happen! Joy is a deeply ingrained part of who we are, and there are small actions we can all take to surround ourselves with more of it. Take a look! 

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The Conspiracy Chronicles: Native Bees, July 2019

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What can we do to save the world’s native bees? Native bees are an important part of our food systems and many ecosystems. Here’s what you can do to help!

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12 minutes

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How to Sail Around the World Without GPS or Technology — Just Ancient Knowledge!

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How in the world did ancient mariners navigate the vast oceans before GPS or technology? These techniques were almost a lost art. That is, until 2013, when Hōkūleʻa set sail to travel around the globe. Take a look at this remarkable ship’s voyage and how her crew is preserving the Polynesian tradition of open ocean navigation.

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15 minutes

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How Spain’s Human Towers Define Community

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How do you build a tower of people 50 feet tall and weighing as much as three elephants? Maybe more importantly, why? The castell builders of Catalonia, Spain are, quite literally, the definition of an uplifting and supportive community.

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6 minutes

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Mole Poblano Asuncion: The Sauce Made with 3 Generations of Love

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What tastes like home to you? When we’re far from home, food can bring us comfort and make us feel a little less homesick. The three generations of women at Mole Poblano Asuncion are bringing the flavors of Mexico to those who miss it most in New York City. Here’s their remarkable story!

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11 minutes

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Here’s How Seizure Detecting Dogs are Changing People’s Lives

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Can dogs really be life-savers? Meet the dogs that are helping their owners detect seizures up to 45 minutes before they occur! It’s a fascinating story. These pups are making life safer and easier for people who suffer from seizures.

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16 minutes

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Lessons on Being Prepared from One of the World’s Best Extreme Athletes

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Starting a new job, a new chapter in life, or maybe just doing something you’ve always wanted to do? Extreme athletes may seem like unlikely sources of inspiration, but their skill at how to avoid panic can be a great example of what we can do in our own lives!

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