Marvin Malecha | Believing in the Teaching of Design

NewSchool Auditorium

NewSchool is pleased to announce a lecture by President Marvin Malecha. This event is free and open to all NewSchool students, faculty, alumni, staff, and the general public. If you are unable to attend in person, register for the live stream here.

Marvin Malecha | Believing in the Teaching of Design
We live in a time of rapidly accelerating change in every major aspect of our lives. What it means to be a practitioner seems to be redefined in ever decreasing cycles. What was once change across generations of learners is now transformation within a short period of years and sometimes even months. Seductive tools even challenge our ability to think freely, as applications can easily substitute for independent inquiry. Amid this milieu is the timeless challenge to what anchors us as human beings, keepers of wisdom and the stewards of knowledge. We are often reminded that we are all on a continuum of learning and experience, some of us more able to act as guides than others.

What does it mean to profess and to act in the role of professor? Even in the world of online education, ubiquitous non-linear learning experiences and project-based learning opportunities, it is apparent that the importance of interaction among human beings cannot be over-estimated. We need to touch each other emotionally and intellectually. So, then the question, “What do you profess?” looms as a simple and incredibly tangled inquiry. What do you profess not only begs for a philosophical, perhaps pedagogical response, but it also is a sum of the personal journey that provides the substance to the answer. In the data-driven context that is the academy, experience becomes the rubric by which each of us assesses what defines us.

To follow the path of design learning is to become intimately aware of the relationship between making, a most human endeavor and the intellectual processes that separate us from all other creatures. Design cannot be mistaken for a linear set of steps. It is anything but linear. Each challenge stimulates a fresh approach. The individual who presumes to enter upon the design continuum must accept that making and personal identity are entwined. Believing in the Teaching of design is to accept the humanity of the effort. It is an assertion that human touch remains important in a world absorbed in artificial intelligence.

This presentation and the accompanying discussion is intended to explore those experiences and connect them to a way of seeing that underlies the design calling and inspires the professor to profess.

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