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IACT: Creativity for Tomorrow

Drive Series Part III: How do we handle disruption?

By Amy Pompilio ‘19

Missed part one and two? Click here. In part two, IACT certificate students Amy, Merani, and Joseph were beginning to collide ideas based on their individual passions, purposes, and possibilities to answer the question: Who is it that we want to help?

Merani, Joseph, and I came together based on similar inner drives, and our next task was to dive into some research. We needed to challenge our assumptions, identify our biases, and find out where our disciplines came into the picture. It was time to study our idea and get to work.

We spent the next few weeks looking more critically at what inspired us to come together. Can math really be good for the brain? What can help treat the advance of Alzheimer’s disease in recently diagnosed patients? How is social isolation related to the progression of Alzheimer’s disease?

But the answers to these questions weren’t the only things we discovered along the way -- an integral part of the process was learning more about each other. At the time of our collision, I had no idea that Joseph knew the Marianist brothers closely and even gave them haircuts. His service-based perspective of neuroscience and medical care made even more sense after that. Merani, who I’ve always known as a talented graphic designer, went through a period of time where she struggled to differentiate between her identity and her career. Our group could better understand why she wanted to use her talents to give back after reading her personal research and reflection.

Just as we began getting closer as a group, we were reminded of the distance that next semester will bring as I study abroad in Russia. I got the flu during finals week, and thus our group had a “trial run” of what it will be like to work remotely in the spring. Facetime and Google Docs at the ready, we came together and finished our final collaborative research paper together in real time despite the distance.

We don’t yet know what next semester holds, but we know for sure that we have the resources to keep working together. And besides, we know as well as anyone how to turn disruption into something great.

Stay tuned as we continue to follow the 2019 IACT certificate cohort as students put the applied creativity mindset into action to create marketable ideas and/or experiences to address societal issues across academic disciplines.

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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Drive Series Part II: Who is it that we want to help?

IACT certificate students begin to collide ideas based on their individual passions, purposes, and possibilities.

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How senior certificate student Logan Zinkhon used empathy and collaboration to find his drive

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