NIC invites public to ‘Spark! Connecting to Creativity'

How the spark of creativity shapes and advances people’s lives is the theme of this year’s North Idaho College Cardinal Connections symposium March 12-14. “Spark! Connecting with Creativity” features three days of workshop presenters and hands-on activities exploring creativity.

This year, an addition to the free workshops and presenters, there will be a “Spark! Lounge,” located on the lower level of the Edminster Student Union Building all three days of the symposium. Modeled after “TED Talks,” which are global talks designed to disseminate “ideas worth spreading,” the lounge will feature live and video presentations focused on creativity from local, regional and national speakers.

A self-guided public art tour will also be available each day for anyone interested in viewing the 150 paintings, photographs, pottery and sculptures that will be displayed in easily accessible places on campus. A campus art tour map and audio file will be available for download to facilitate the self-tour. For those unable to visit the campus in person, photos and descriptions for the art will be viewable online off

All the workshops and presentations will take place March 12-14 in the Edminster Student Union Building Lake Coeur d’Alene Room, except for the “Blah, Blah, Blah” visual learning and creativity presentation on March 14, which will take place in Boswell Hall Schuler Performing Arts Center.

Monday, March 12

The symposium will focus on creativity in business beginning at 10 a.m. when NIC Journalism Instructor Geoff Carr (pictured left as Steve Jobs and right in front of a slide of Apple cofounders Steve Wozniak and Jobs) will present a 50-minute Chautauqua performance in character as Apple founder Steve Jobs. The presentation is a compilation of actual quotes concerning innovation and creativity from Jobs as performed by Carr. Three different stories will be imparted on the iconic Jobs, specifically how creativity inspired him to start two innovative companies that changed the universe: Apple Computers and Pixar Animation.

From 11:45 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. a “Creative Business Panel Discussion” will be moderated by Bill Jhung, director of the NIC Idaho Small Business Development Center. Panel guests include Allen Mangum, Timberland founder; Elizabeth Turley, Meesh & Mia founder; Charles Manning, PlayXpert founder; and Ben Towes, co-owner of Bullet Tools. The discussion will center on how some local businesses are thriving and their keys to success.

Tuesday, March 13

From 9 to 10:15 a.m., NIC Philosophy Instructor Pat Lippert will expand upon a video presentation from Elizabeth Gilbert, author of “Eat, Pray, Love” in his own talk on “Genius and the Heart of the Matter: All Life is Artistic.” In her presentation, Gilbert explains that genius is best understood as something external to us, and that our challenge is to “show up every day and do our job,” being always responsive to it. Lippert will expand on this point by identifying genius with semiosis, which is the process of sign making and sign interpretation.

From noon to 12:50 p.m., NIC Humanities Instructor and Theater Director Joe Jacoby will explores one of the world’s most creative individuals in modern history, John Lennon, with a Chautauqua performance titled “Imagine.”
From 1 to 2:15 p.m., the highly masterful and creative composer, Dan Bukvich, will share insights into “The Creative Process.” Bukvich has been commissioned to write for bands, orchestras and choirs from NIC to the Vatican.

Wednesday, March 14

From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., drum circle and hand-drumming expert Michael Moon Bear will teach the proper technique to playing each drum and help audience members find their own creative beat. No experience is necessary to participate in this activity. Moon Bear is a professional percussionist, author, director and educator.

At 2 p.m., international bestselling author Dan Roam will give a presentation based on the principles his book “Blah Blah Blah: What to Do When Words Don’t Work.” Roam’s bestseller “The Back of the Napkin: Solving Problems and Selling Ideas with Pictures” was named Best Innovation Book of the Year by magazines “Businessweek” and “Fast Company.” He has helped leaders at Microsoft, Google, Wal-Mart, Boeing and the U.S. Senate solve complex problems through visual thinking. His visual explanation of American healthcare was selected by “Businessweek” as “The World’s Best Presentation of 2009” and resulted in Roam being invited to the White House Communications Office to discuss visual problem solving.

All events are free and open to the public. For a complete schedule of events, visit

For More Information
NIC Cardinal Connections Chair Max Mendez, (208) 769-3275 or

Posted: Thursday, March 8, 2012

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