Defying routine at CMC (Part 2): Where innovation intersects with creative self-expression

A look at key programs and organizations that place a premium on creativity and innovation

More is required than a powerful ethos and faculty inspiration to effect change on any college campus; there must be plenty of platforms and venues where these ideas can be implemented and tested.

At CMC, several organizations/institutes on campus seek to engender and promote innovation and creativity—among them are the CIE (Center for Innovation  & Entrepreneurship), the Center for Civic Engagement, the Arts Council, the Kravis Leadership Institute, the Kravis Prize, and the Robert Day School through its curriculum and jointly-sponsored workshops with CIE in the entrepreneurship arena.

The CMC Arts Council, which was founded in 2012 under the auspices of the ASCMC administration, serves as a student voice to promote the arts on campus.

After the first year under the umbrella of ASCMC, the Art Council became an independent student-run organization whose aim is to increase the presence of art on campus—exploring a multitude of mediums—wherever possible.

Last year, the Arts Council presented artwork created by CMC artists, including works of photography, painting and more and displayed at the Athenaeum. 

In a further effort to foster CMC talent, the Council helped student musicians, singers, poets and artists find a rehearsal and performance venue—The Cave—located in the basement of Marks Hall.

Along with artistic expression, the College also established a venue for lively (and civil) debate with The Current, a program encouraging discussions between students and faculty on a range of timely, relevant topics, ranging from the U.S. government shutdown to the future of peace in the Middle East.

Under President Chodosh’s leadership, the College has also invested in more teaching grants to “flip” classrooms and integrate technology and find new ways, for example, of teaching economics to ensure that coursework remains topical, relevant, and meaningful.


A nexus of topicality and relevance is provided by the Kravis Leadership Institute (KLI), one of the cornerstones of CMC and a leading academic center for the promotion and understanding of responsible, innovative leadership and provides unique opportunities for CMC students to develop as outstanding real world leaders in the public, private and social sectors. 

KLI and the Kravis Prize—which provides a $250,000 annual award to emerging leaders in the nonprofit sector—have partnered in numerous ways to promote student learning with social impact.

That effort includes summer internships with Kravis Prize recipient organizations, as well as KLI’s offering of three research fellowship programs for CMC students which support, encourage, and expand the ongoing leadership research of CMC students.

Next:  Read Part 3--Ignoring the Stigma of Failure