Beth Du Pont

15 Feb

When I think of the word “innovator”, I immediately think of someone or some “thing” that has changed the way people live their lives, preferably for the better. For example, here are my top 3 favorite innovators:

  1. Apple Computer – For technologies such as the iPhone, iPad, Siri, and Apps that have changed the way I live my life.
  2. Capresso – For making it possible for me to have a freshly ground cup of coffee, whatever strength I want, whenever I want it.
  3. The RoamEO dog collar – For making it possible to track my dogs (aka Lewis and Clark) when they disappear on a neighborhood trekking adventure.

I am not comfortable describing myself as an innovator. I prefer to describe myself as a creative problem solver. In my role at Skidmore College (Director of Academic Technologies), I often find myself in situations where I have to listen closely to others, gather perspectives, and participate in seeking solutions. The situation involved does not necessarily have to be a problem. It may include a challenge, an opportunity or something that needs improvement. Those of you who are Instructional Technologists might agree, we are always keeping an eye out for new innovations and then seeking out creative ways to introduce them to our faculty. We often have to help them find the benefit or value that an innovation holds for them, and then assist them along the path of adoption. According to the Wikipedia definition of creative problem solving, “To qualify as creative problem solving, the solution must either have value, clearly solve the stated problem, or be appreciated by someone for whom the situation improves.” This description seems to fit the way I see myself.

I am very excited to be a part of the Innovation Studio, and perhaps by the end of the process, I might be convinced that I do have an innovative streak. I look forward to meeting and working with the group.


One Response to “Beth Du Pont”

  1. Lisa Spiro February 16, 2012 at 12:06 am #

    OK, now I’m craving a cappuccino. I like your definition of creative problem solving, but I suspect that it has much in common with innovation. Great to have you in the Studio!

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