doel08 (closing)


Dr. Ronald Jones was the conference keynote speaker. Jones served as faculty at some prestigious schools: the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan; The Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) in Providence; the School of the Arts at Columbia University; and continues to teach at Konstfack, University College of Arts, Crafts and Design in Stockholm. He helped create the Fathom Archive for Online Learning at Columbia University, and he's a recognized artist, writer, and librettist. Quite a list; you can find his boilerplate several places. I didn't see him in the hall or at lunch, and I can't find presentation notes online. It would have been exciting to have some sort of brief access to the man, a chance for dialog, or at least a less formal continuation of his address.

What does a day
as a critical thinker
look like?
One observation that Jones shared continues to stir my thoughts. He noted that large corporations like General Motors are visiting design schools like RISD to find employees—not to design cars, but to provide critical thinking for the corporation. I wonder how that works? What does a day as a critical thinker look like? How does the new girl from RISD convince all the old non-critical thinkers that her perceptions have merit? I hope GM hires them in twos so they each have someone to talk to.

So an elderly couple want to hire an artist. Relatives have told them that they need some color in their lives. Their apartment is dismal, and they should hire a decorator or at least a color advisor to pick paint chips. Well, as it turns out, the couple isn't really a couple. They're fraternal twins living together for safety and convenience, and each has the same genetic color blindness. One art school student after another is hired and let go after a day or two. Regardless of the training and background of the parade of advisors, the couple won't approve any of the paint recommendations. They all look the same! Why should they pay these people for this sort of pointless advice? And what difference will it make anyway?

Penn State
April 18, Symposium 2009; reimagine.
New content. Symposium 2008.Digital Commons at Penn State. Improve the workplace; hire for variety.


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