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Posted 11.2.15

Practitioner-Scholar Speaker Series: Ann Kowal Smith, DM '10

Ann Kowal Smith, DM '10 and executive director of Books@Work was the first speaker in the new Practitioner-Scholar Speaker series in the Doctor of Management program Thursday, October 29 from 1-2:30 p.m.

Books@Work: Never Underestimate the Value of a Good Story

Books@Work brings a meaningful, respectful and rigorous liberal arts experience to adults in workplace and community settings. Drawing on participant experience and guided by professors, weekly professor-led Books@Work seminars use both fiction and nonfiction literature to investigate essential questions, explore diverse perspectives and inspire participants to find their voice. By bringing high quality learning experiences to a new audience, Books@Work build confidence, critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity. Books@Work also redefines the role of academic rigor in the community, challenging paradigms about who is entitled to, and benefits from, the inspiration of the liberal arts.

But what can we learn from this work?  How might we take principles of evidence-based management to refine a program in progress, to define and shape its evaluation and assessment, and, perhaps most importantly, to capture and codify its impact?  Ann Kowal Smith, Founder and Executive Director of Books@Work shared information about the program, its power and her work in bringing critical elements of her own scholar-practitioner journey  - both qualitative and quantitative - into her everyday work.


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Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University cultivates creativity, innovation, and purpose-driven leadership to design a better world.

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