Alumni Forums: Doing Good in the World Part 1

Alumni Forums: Doing Good in the World Part 1


Welcome to the International Center for
Studies in Creativity and Change Leadership Spring 2009 alumni series.
Today is Doing Good in the World. It’s a forum on non-for-profits and causes you
care about. And I’m thrilled that for this first forum on Doing Good in the World, we have
three people with us today that, that i’ve known for quite a while, and I will let them introduce themselves
in a second, and tell you a little bit about themselves. This is the second of five forums that we
are doing in CRS 635, Creativity and Change Leadership.
It’s a capstone course for our program, and we brought in our alum who have
a Masters of Science in Creativity to talk a bit about what they’re doing
and their reflections on integrating creativity and what they do in
the profession. So if you’d say a little bit about
who you are and what you do what would be terrific. Hi, I’m Sandra Fink, and the name of my company is
ThinkFink Solutions. And what do I do? Well, the company itself focuses on executive coaching and
leadership. We’ve transitioned to that, finally kind of found my niche, what I think I want to do with my creativity skills. What I do in the world that might be
good…
(laughter) my, my master’s thesis, master’s project was on starting a therapy dog service, and I took my dog for training, and I knew I
had to do that, but I wanted to find more about well how does this really affect people? And I found out way more than I could
write about, and that it was… when a person has a dog or a pet with them in all kinds of situation, it could be a
trauma, it could be abuse, that they seem to just kind of relax. Their
blood pressure goes down, everything changes. And a lot of time in counseling, they end up talking about things that
they never would tell a person. They’re telling the dog, but the counselor’s
sitting there. So that’s one of the things I do. Since, Since the therapy dog, that kind of
started a lot of different thoughts for me for volunteering, and so I’ve helped with facilitate retreats at my church, I’ve gotten involved in community organizations. One of
them is the VOA: Volunteers of America. And what happens when you go to meetings
and people hear you talking, you talk different, and they’ll come up and they’ll
ask you, “Would you like to be on this board? Would you like to
participate in this? Because we like your innovative ideas.” And you’ve got to let me know when I’m
near five minutes. Well this is just the intro, we haven’t started the five minutes yet.
-This is just the intro! Oh, okay! That’s probably more than enough, ’cause
then I won’t have anything to talk about later. -And you’re also a retired teacher from the
Rochester schools as well. Yes I am, I’m happily retired from
teaching most of my time seventh-grade science. -Great, thanks. Well good evening, my name’s
Andy Burnett, I am a recovering academic.
(laughter) I used to, I used to teach creativity and
innovation at a business school in the UK, that was a number of years ago, and then got bored with talking about it and wanted to
move more into doing it, so together some colleagues, we set up what was
essentially a software company in Cambridge in the Science Park in the UK. We refer to it as Cambridge
Release One. Apparently there is an updated version in
North America, but we’ve been working on that now for the
last ten years, and in that time what we’ve
been focusing really is ways in which we might be able to use
technology to support both the education in creativity and
the process of thinking creatively itself. And we do that in various parts of the world, and we do
it in some traditional ways and with traditional
people. So we’ll run training courses for people in the United Nations in very
nice office blocks in the center of Rome, and then we also do the same sort of
thing in the wilds of Sudan or halfway up the Himalayan Mountains and various
things like that. So it’s an interesting combination of
both face-to-face and technology-enabled
ways in which to connect people. And recently we’ve been thinking about
how, how best to define what it is we’re
interested in doing for the next ten or so years. And what’s driving us at the moment is
establishing what we’re calling friction- less creativity, which is the idea that you might be able
to connect anybody anywhere in interesting and novel ways in order to
be able to share ideas and experience. And we’re now at a stage where at
least technologically that’s possible. The real challenge is to understand from a social and a
psychological perspective how one might do that in a really
effective way. So that’s, that’s largely what I spend my time doing. Hi, I’m Joette Fields, and I got my degree thirty years ago right here at Buff State with Dr. Sidney Parnes and Dr. Ruth Noller. And by the way, it’s an honor to be here
tonight. And what I’ve done since then is be a mom
of four children, who range in age from 23 to 32, and I’ve been teaching at Williamsville, Iroquois,
throughout the Western New York area, and in addition consult in creativity. I cannot tell you how valuable my degree
in Creative Studies has been through my life, for my life, personally and
professionally, and spiritually, and other things. It has really opened up my world and took me places where I honestly never
thought I could go before, because it almost did this
unleashing. I loved your recovering… (laughter) I think after this year I may be a
recovering teacher as well. So I can tell you more as we go along, more of my sagas, here, there, and
everywhere.
-Thank you. Alright. You can see that we really have a
very multi-talented group, and even though I’ve asked them to a
forum on doing good in the world, they have so many things to share that
are all about doing good, but in very diverse ways. So there’s, from
what they’ll share today in this short time, there’s, that’s just the tip of the
iceberg, and under that are so many other things, rich things that they’ve done. And as I started my degree here in ’87, Joette was
one of those people that was really an inspiration to me as far as What are the things that you can do
with a degree in education?

Danny Hutson

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