Transformative Education:
The Adventure Continues

TC’s first LGBTQ scholar is a Hollywood veteran who is addressing bullying in the workplace.

As a longtime Hollywood storyteller, I understand what the late Teachers College adult educator Jack Mezirow would call the transformative impact of storytelling—its power to move, inspire and educate.

Here, as we say in Hollywood, is my story.

I direct Creative Lab Hawaii, funded by the state and the U.S. Department of Commerce to design and facilitate programs that help creative entrepreneurs—writers, directors, producers, actors, fashion designers, musicians and software developers—deepen their craft.   

I returned to school to expand my knowledge in emotional intelligence, executive coaching and the latest theories of how adults learn. With what I’ve learned at TC, where Mezirow revolutionized adult education with his theory that grown-ups grow by questioning their most deeply held assumptions and expectations, I’ve democratized Creative Lab Hawaii, collapsing the presumptive hierarchal space between facilitators and learners.

As the College’s first LGBTQ Scholar, I have also worked with The Tyler Clementi Foundation, created by the parents of a young man who took his own life after being bullied and humiliated in college, to develop a one-hour module that empowers adults to identify and neutralize bullying behavior in the workplace. Research by bullying authority Dorothy Espelage shows that transformative change requires a holistic approach to bullying that includes all participants. Thus our module focuses not only on the bullied individual, but also on the individual doing the bullying and bystanders witnessing the event.  

Storytelling is central to our approach. In an opening video, Jane Clementi shares her son’s story and how her family transformed their loss by becoming anti-bullying advocates. Rather than simply imparting information, our facilitators (experts in psychology, training and development) describe bullying in their own lives and encourage learners to do the same. Discussion is grounded in a case study and consideration of real-world applications of research.  

In August, Workplace Options, a leader in human capital training and development, distributed the module to 50,000-plus client companies worldwide. A portion of the licensing fees supports The Tyler Clementi Foundation. A pre- and post- survey of learners will inform future iterations.  

I am beginning my second year in September, and looking forward to furthering my academic and professional adventure. —Michael Palmieri


(Published 7/23/2015)

Michael Andres Palmieri, a writer/producer/educator, is a student in TC's Adult Learning & Leadership Program, and its first LGBTQ Scholar. His academic focus is on the intersectionality of transformative learning, storytelling and technology.

 

 

Published Thursday, Jul. 23, 2015

Transformative Education:
The Adventure Continues

TC’s first LGBTQ scholar is a Hollywood veteran who is addressing bullying in the workplace.

As a longtime Hollywood storyteller, I understand what the late Teachers College adult educator Jack Mezirow would call the transformative impact of storytelling—its power to move, inspire and educate.

Here, as we say in Hollywood, is my story.

I direct Creative Lab Hawaii, funded by the state and the U.S. Department of Commerce to design and facilitate programs that help creative entrepreneurs—writers, directors, producers, actors, fashion designers, musicians and software developers—deepen their craft.   

I returned to school to expand my knowledge in emotional intelligence, executive coaching and the latest theories of how adults learn. With what I’ve learned at TC, where Mezirow revolutionized adult education with his theory that grown-ups grow by questioning their most deeply held assumptions and expectations, I’ve democratized Creative Lab Hawaii, collapsing the presumptive hierarchal space between facilitators and learners.

As the College’s first LGBTQ Scholar, I have also worked with The Tyler Clementi Foundation, created by the parents of a young man who took his own life after being bullied and humiliated in college, to develop a one-hour module that empowers adults to identify and neutralize bullying behavior in the workplace. Research by bullying authority Dorothy Espelage shows that transformative change requires a holistic approach to bullying that includes all participants. Thus our module focuses not only on the bullied individual, but also on the individual doing the bullying and bystanders witnessing the event.  

Storytelling is central to our approach. In an opening video, Jane Clementi shares her son’s story and how her family transformed their loss by becoming anti-bullying advocates. Rather than simply imparting information, our facilitators (experts in psychology, training and development) describe bullying in their own lives and encourage learners to do the same. Discussion is grounded in a case study and consideration of real-world applications of research.  

In August, Workplace Options, a leader in human capital training and development, distributed the module to 50,000-plus client companies worldwide. A portion of the licensing fees supports The Tyler Clementi Foundation. A pre- and post- survey of learners will inform future iterations.  

I am beginning my second year in September, and looking forward to furthering my academic and professional adventure. —Michael Palmieri


(Published 7/23/2015)

Michael Andres Palmieri, a writer/producer/educator, is a student in TC's Adult Learning & Leadership Program, and its first LGBTQ Scholar. His academic focus is on the intersectionality of transformative learning, storytelling and technology.

 

 

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