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Alumni, Others Share Best Practices during Creativity Expert Exchange

Alumni, Others Share Best Practices during Creativity Expert Exchange

Posted: June 7, 2016

Alumni of Buffalo State’s graduate Creative Studies program, along with others who use creativity daily in their professions, will gather on campus June 11–13 for the 14th annual Creativity Expert Exchange (CEE).

Hosted by the International Center for Studies in Creativity (ICSC), the conference provides a venue to hear how creativity experts tackle difficult challenges as well as learn about the research and new initiatives their peers are undertaking. Forty speakers, a mix of faculty, alumni, and creativity professionals from the United States and beyond, will share their experience using creativity in industries ranging from events management to education. Most of the workshops take place in the Bulger Communication Center.

“This year’s exchange promises to be one of the best,” said Gerard Puccio, professor and chair of creative studies." During dinner on June 12, keynote speaker Mark Runco, professor of creative studies at the University of Georgia and founding editor of the Creativity Research Journal, will provide the keynote address. In true creativity fashion, Puccio will conduct an onstage interview with Runco, who collaborated with the ICSC in 2015 to introduce two new academic journals, Business Creativity and the Creative Economy and the Journal of Genius and Eminence.

“Mark is one of the best thought-leaders in the field. He is also a prolific writer who has authored several hundred scholarly publications,” Puccio said. “We are honored to have him."

CEE will kick off at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 11, with a Jeffersonian Dinner at The Foundry, an incubator and community space on Buffalo’s East Side. ICSC alumnus Greg Melia,’09, chief member relations and strategy development officer at the American Society of Education Executives (ASAE), will serve as speaker. On Sunday, June 12, ICSC faculty will present new research and trends in the field of creativity including findings from the “bus study.”

“Over the last four years we have been giving small groups a real challenge to work on provided by NFTA: How to get more people to ride the bus,” Puccio said. “Each group was given 50 minutes to generate as many solutions as they might and then to come up with their two best recommendations. We looked at how creativity training impacted this group work, and we found that those who went through one creativity course produced 350 percent more ideas than groups without training.”

On Monday, June 13, about a dozen ICSC alumni will give short CEE talks, modeled after TED talks, on topics such as “The Art of Making Mistakes,” “Entrepreneurs as Creative Leaders” and “Roots of Creativity in the Arabic Culture.”

A new aspect of this year’s conference is an auxiliary component for kids. “Beyonder Pop-Up @CEE” is a mini creativity workshop designed for attendees’ children, age 8 and older. It takes place on June 12 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and June 13 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. alongside the CEE conference in Bulger Communication Center. Beyonder co-founders Pamela Szalay, ’08, and Jenna Smith, ’12, are leading the workshop. The cost is $100 per child per day.

Registration information. 

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