Happy Occasion: An Upcoming Festival Brings Together Leaders in Positive Psychology

By Friedlander, Jamie | Success, March 2016 | Go to article overview

Happy Occasion: An Upcoming Festival Brings Together Leaders in Positive Psychology


Friedlander, Jamie, Success


A group of sixth-graders sit at their desks, pencils in hand, to take the same standardized history test. Some are brimming with confidence, while others sweat with nervousness. I didn't memorize all of these dates in time, one boy worriedly thinks. April 12, 1861, the Civil War begins, one girl confidently recites in her head.

For some, memorization comes easy. For others, there's nothing harder. But what if instead of being evaluated on the same content in the same format, each student was evaluated by his individual talents and character strengths--such as creativity, leadership and humility?

For proponents of positive education, this theory could (and should) be a reality. Positive psychology advocates believe today's educational and professional landscape shouldn't just value academic achievement, but character development, happiness and well-being as well--traits intrinsic to one's intellectual growth and ability to flourish. By providing positive support during the learning and training process, higher levels of happiness can be reached.

Positive psychology supporters can now gather to discuss their ideas at the International Positive Education Network's (IPEN) inaugural Festival of Positive Education from July 18-20 at the InterContinental Dallas hotel. Educators, academics, policymakers, professionals, entrepreneurs and parents will attend the festival to discuss the latest findings in positive psychology's power to promote achievement and personal development. The festival anticipates attendees from over 30 countries.

Professionals looking to improve their work culture can also benefit from attending the festival, as the ideas covered are applicable for those trying to build a strong, cohesive company. After all, happier employees are more productive and creative.

"If you are interested in making education more positive and more focused on character development, you should attend this gathering," says Dominic Randolph, head of Riverdale Country School in New York City and a scheduled speaker at the festival. …

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