UTSA teaches leadership through the arts: Poet to offer fresh perspective

David Whyte

Poet David White
(Photo by Scott Garen)

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(Dec. 16, 2013) -- The MIT Sloan School of Management calls in multi-platinum award winning voice coach Claude Stein to train its students. The University of Oxford Said Business School includes prominent theater director Richard Olivier as an associate fellow. Why would some of the nation's leading business schools add poets, artists and musicians to their faculty ranks? The same reason the Center for Professional Excellence in the UTSA College of Business is bringing poet David Whyte to San Antonio -- to bring a fresh perspective on leadership.

Internationally renowned poet and author David Whyte will present "Solace: The Art of Asking the Beautiful Question" at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 4 in the Business Building on UTSA Main Campus.

"David's work deepens our inquiry into leadership and the conversational nature of life," said Bob Lengel, associate dean of executive education and director of the UTSA Center for Professional Excellence. "Art can be a powerful tool to help us reflect upon our place in this world. In my years studying leadership, I've learned that self-reflection is an important characteristic of leaders who are able to create meaningful organizational change."

Studies have shown that learning through arts-based activities can be a valuable means of leadership development. Qualities that drive an artist are similar to those that make a great leader, including creative thinking, self-reflection, collaboration and the ability to see the big picture.

A dynamic speaker and author of seven books of poetry and three best-selling books of prose, Whyte's presentation will explore the discipline of finding and asking the questions that help us re-imagine ourselves, our world and our part in it.

In addition to Whyte's public presentation, he will co-host a leadership seminar for the UTSA Executive M.B.A. students with Bob Lengel and work with students in the undergraduate Leadership Challenge program.

Tickets to the public presentation are $35 and $15 for UTSA faculty, staff and students. All proceeds from the event will benefit the college's Leadership Challenge program, which provides opportunities for students to develop their leadership potential through experiential learning and inquiry into the physical, social and moral faces of courage.

>> For more information about the public program Saturday evening, visit the CPE website, call 210-458-7415 or email Kandis.Larkey@utsa.edu. Purchase tickets online at the UTSA Giving website.

The Center for Professional Excellence (CPE) is the home of the UTSA College of Business Executive M.B.A. program and executive education. Through its internationally recognized research program, the CPE explores leadership and organizational transformation from the perspective of the blended lenses of the arts and sciences and the application of innovative conversational technologies. Learn more at the Center for Professional Excellence website.