This is the inaugural blog post for Impact Through Innovation, an initiative of the School of Education and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. As an academic who is also interested in the power of innovative ways of thinking, I hope that ITI will help you expand the impact of your ideas by supporting you in making new choices and engaging in new behaviors related to your unique intellectual life and work, and by extension those of your students and others. As a faculty member, you are highly trained, intelligent, and enjoy the support of a university organization that is well positioned to help you make a difference. Thus, you are in a unique position to impact the world.
At a recent conference I learned that the rate of entrepreneurship in the U.S. is half what it was a generation ago. People who teach entrepreneurship are uncertain why this is the case. This fact struck me as both surprising and revealing. Why in the modern world with so many possibilities, access to education, access to information and increasing wealth, would fewer people undertake the process of turning an idea into activities that positively shape the world? Although academics are not entrepreneurs, many of us care deeply about topics that can directly impact the lives of those around us and by extension work to improve our communities intellectually and economically. For example, many people outside of universities care about hiring folks who are skilled at communicating their ideas in writing. The School of Education has faculty members who are uniquely capable of making a difference in this area. Gate City Writes is one such initiative that trains pre-service teachers in how to teach writing while simultaneously teaching students how to write engaging stories.
In future posts, you will read about other initiatives of the School of Education and the innovative projects that are underway. To learn about the opportunities that Impact Through Innovation provides, please explore this site and reach out if you have questions.