This three-day group relations conference offers a unique opportunity to study the conscious and unconscious dynamics involved in how groups organize themselves and interact with each other. This conference is not a passive learning event that relies upon lectures. Instead, the learning is experiential. Participants study how leadership, followership, authority, task, boundaries, and roles operate in the different group experiences they enter during the conference. The conference will weave art and other non-verbal forms of expression into the conference events to illuminate unconscious dynamics operating in the system of group interactions that members and staff will create together.
The Leadership and Creative Expression (LCE) program is conceived to support the development of systems thinkers who can view society and its challenges (as well as its opportunities) through the lens of both science and the subjective, encouraging creativity within and beyond the boundaries of the University.
More specifically, the LCE Program seeks to:
Create spaces for experiential learning and reflection designed to engage with the data of experience as it relates to boundaries, authority, role, task, and individual and group expression and as the data play out in real time within the microcosm of the larger world that staff and members of our events create together
Provide opportunities for participant observational learning about how large systems work, how societies and organizations function, how individuals gain agency, and how to mobilize to confront social and environmental problems through learning that is primarily in the consultant-facilitated "here and now" experience of small, large and self-organizing groups peppered with opportunities to reflect on this experience
Provide a community context to one's educational experience, allowing for the connection of academic coursework to real life leadership roles on and off campus and as citizens in a democracy (life-long learning), thereby integrating meaningful community-engaged service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning experience, teach civic responsibility and strengthen our on and off campus community
Teach competencies and skills in how to organize collectively toward whatever goal(s) are set
More broadly, this program seeks to support any interdisciplinary, co-curricular, experiential programming likely to be high-impact, transformative, constructively disruptive, and/or academically integrative in nature, dealing with the "bigger questions" that have real-life application, ideally preparing participants for an engaged life outside of the classroom in a way that encourages socially- and environmentally-conscious practices, the exploration of diversity and the linking of differentiated parts of individuals, groups, organizations and society-as-a-whole.