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IACT: Creativity for Tomorrow

Drive Series Part I: Who do you want to be?

By Amy Pompilio ‘19

“When was the last time someone asked you who you want to be?”

When Brian LaDuca, Executive Director of IACT, posed that question to our certificate cohort, I wrote on my neon-tangerine paper, well, never -- unless 10 seconds ago counts.

Who did I want to be? A radiologist? Ballet teacher? Rock and roll drummer? These titles paled in comparison to the paper they landed on. Some had sparked my curiosity at some point or another growing up. Others were the results of 20-question career quizzes I took in high school. But these titles were all what. I needed to find who.

How had my aspirations morphed from medical professional, to ballerina, to mathematician? I was far from being the only eclectic one in the room -- the future physical therapist at my table thought she’d become a professional basketball player. We were all getting closer to finding that who. But we needed to figure out how we got here first.

To answer a question that was so deceptively familiar, I had to make sense of what connected all my disparate interests over the years. I am an individual of many hobbies, and each one is a facet of my passion. But what united them? And who, not what, am I as a result?

I’ve always been naturally curious, and I have that in common with the rest of my cohort. But while answering this question alongside my IACT peers, I realized something more. Because of where my curiosities led me, I had at least one shared experience with everyone in the room. An engineering student and I shared a love of drumming. I could talk about my international travels with a sociology major whose study abroad experience altered the course of his career.

Having common ground with so many people in so many different ways had always made collaboration that much easier. Mathematics encompasses the same feeling -- what better way to relate to others than through the language of the universe? Math is in everything from medicine to the arts, and I want to be the person who shares that perspective with everyone I meet.

Stay tuned for Part II as Amy and her certificate cohort work their way through the IACT’s Drive model of vocational discernment and self-determination for action through Purpose, Passion and Possibility.

At the Institute of Applied Creativity for Transformation (IACT), our vision is to create a mindset of possibility that disrupts the world through 21st century citizenship. We believe in creative changemaking with a sustainable, humanity-centered focus that blends educational and vocational frameworks for self-determination and transdisciplinary transformation.

IACT is home to the nation’s first undergraduate certificate in Applied Creativity for Transformation. Open to undergraduate students of any major, the certificate is a first step in achieving the University of Dayton’s vision of innovation, applied creativity, entrepreneurship and community engagement for the common good. For more information about IACT at ArtStreet, call 937-229-5101 or visit


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