This is more of a call to action than it is a blog post. We are in the preliminary planning stages for our Big Ideas Conference that will be held in mid May of 2012. Finalized dates and details will be shared in the next few weeks as we solidify just a couple more things.
However, we want the Big Ideas Conference to inspire each of those that participate and attend. So we ask, who inspires you? Let me give a little more context so we are all on the same page. Many people probably come to mind at first, well at least we hope many people come to mind, its important to surround yourself with people that inspire you. But, we want you to dig deep and think about what it means to be inspired. Below is a 3 minute video that I find to be very inspiring.
I’ll give one more example. Last year I brought a group of graduate, professional and undergraduate staff into NYC. We did a “Broadway Classroom” training, and one of our trainers had been on Broadway for 20 years. He is a cast member in Wicked, and spoke passionately about how important it is for him to not only focus on his acting but how important it is that he knows everyone he works with and what they do. He works to build relationships and understand the janitors at the Gershwin theater, the lighting crew on set, and everyone in between. This was an inspiring guy, and the message was just as relevant in higher ed as it was on Broadway.
The Call to Action
Think about someone you met at a dinner party or a family friend that has an amazing story. Someone that you went to school with that is doing inspiring work. Maybe you brought in someone for a training that doesn’t necessarily fit the typical “trainer” mold, and had an unconventional message about passion, leadership, or making ideas happen. Did we strike a chord? Does someone come to mind? Comment below with their name, a little about their story, and a way we can reach you (e-mail, twitter handle, etc.) to follow up. If you prefer not to list contact info right here on the comment thread, just e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. If you see a comment about someone inspiring, let us know that you like an idea someone posted.Courtney O’Connell Vice President, The Jersey Alliance Big Ideas Conference, Chair