AIHACONNECT | Opening and Closing Sessions
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Opening and Closing Sessions

Prepare to Be Inspired

Opening Keynote: The Power of Peculiar Thinking: Problem-Solving Through Creativity and Ingenuity

Dr. Samuel Ramsey

Monday, May 20
8:00 a.m.-9:30 a.m. ET
Dr. Samuel Ramsey

As a young graduate researcher, Dr. Sammy Ramsey looked at an age-old
question—“What’s happening to the honeybees?”—through a new lens to make a breakthrough discovery that turned the field of bee research on its head.

In this talk, Dr. Ramsey spurs audiences to think outside the box as he shares the story of what led him to connect a family member’s health issues back to his bee research to arrive at a powerful conclusion on the parasitic pandemic plaguing the honeybees. In this talk, he walks audiences through his process for using peculiar thinking that gets the brain processing ideas in new and unique ways and unlocks new outlets for pushing past stalls in thinking and productivity. The approach Dr. Ramsey shares gives people the freedom to dig deeper into all the ideas that they’re told are “too crazy” and “will never work” as they figure out how to tackle complex problems and innovate with impact.

Opening Session and coffee sponsored by

SGS Galson
About Dr. Samuel Ramsey

Described as “your friendly neighborhood entomologist,” Dr. Ramsey is the endowed professor of entomology at the University of Colorado Boulder, where he teaches about effective communication and how understanding of the deep interconnectedness of all organisms can solve real-world problems. He is also the founder of The Ramsey Research Foundation, which conducts cutting-edge, novel research on issues affecting pollinator health globally — including parasite spread, disease management, and habitat preservation. He has utilized his exceptional skillset working in academia, industry, and government — including alongside the U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. House of Representatives, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

A powerful voice in the science community and beyond, Dr. Ramsey is a National Geographic explorer who was recognized by the publication as a 2022 Wayfinder Award recipient, which honors individuals leading a new age of exploration through science, education, conservation, technology, and storytelling. He has shared his insights and expertise in the Hulu docuseries Your Attention Please, as well as in the Washington Post, on NPR, CNN, Wired, CBS Mornings, Khan Academy, Seeker, The Today Show, and several local news segments. He also authored a chapter in the book, The Future of Exploration, in which 35+ world-renowned science leaders share firsthand accounts of adventure and discovery in their fields. Additionally, Dr. Ramsey leverages social media and his YouTube channel (“Doctor Buggs”) to inspire the next generation of curious minds and introduce them to all the possibilities that exist for them to flourish within STEM. A passionate advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion at the highest levels, he is determined to create a future where everyone has equal opportunities for success, regardless of their background or appearance.

Dr. Ramsey graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Entomology from Cornell and later earned a PhD at the University of Maryland. He completed his post-doctoral training at USDA-ARS Bee Research Laboratory.

Closing Keynote: The Neuroscience of Innovation – and How to Develop New Insights

Wednesday, May 22
3:30 p.m.-4:45 p.m. ET
Dr. Helena Boschi

The human brain craves distraction and is constantly bombarded by sensory information, but we simply don’t have the brainpower to process it all. While our attentional system steers our perception, the brain has to make a choice about what it focuses on.

This stimulating session helps us challenge what we think we see in order to stretch our thinking and develop new insights. Because we tend to see the world through our own lens, we often develop a narrow perspective, based on the expertise we master throughout our career. But true innovation demands that we become more divergent and exploratory in our idea generation, turning accepted wisdom upside down and challenging our norms, even when they work. This session forces us to question what we think we see and take into account the fact that we rarely perceive the "truth." This session also looks at how to increase cognitive agility, creative thinking, and openness – to become a constant, continual learner.

About Dr. Helena Boschi

Dr. Helena Boschi is a psychologist who focuses on applied neuroscience in the workplace. Her particular areas of interest include the brain and behavior, our emotional and rational neural networks, and how to improve our cognitive abilities in order to get the best out of our own and others’ brainpower. Boschi has also researched the influence of cognitive biases and corporate psychopathy across different organizations. Recently, she investigated the impact of chronic, work-induced stress on brain function and published a book called Why We Do What We Do: Understanding Our Brain to Get the Best Out of Ourselves and Others.

Boschi has spent the last 25 years working closely with businesses to define and design new initiatives, particularly in the areas of organizational behavior, leadership and team development, intercultural communication, and organizational change. She has held senior talent management and organization development positions within international companies and now works predominantly in the telecommunications, pharmaceutical, and finance industries. She has delivered and coordinated tailored development in different countries in line with the requisite capabilities and business requirements and created a reliable process for building a talent pipeline. Boschi believes in creating an energized and participative learning environment whilst at the same time treating people with sensitivity and respect. She has lived and worked in Switzerland and the US and now works extensively across the Middle East, Europe, the US, Africa, and Asia. She works at all levels within organizations and also coaches senior executives.

With a deep commitment to ongoing research in current organizational and psychological trends, Boschi possesses keen insight into best and evolving practices in learning, communication, and leadership. A member of the British Psychological Society, she brings a scientific edge to the work she delivers and continues to apply the latest developments in the fields of psychology, neuroscience, and behavior to the organizational context.

Thank you to our AIHA Connect 2024 Sponsors