The Power of Your Story: Connecting People, Building Community

2021tue15jun8:00 amtue9:30 amThe Power of Your Story: Connecting People, Building Community8:00 am - 9:30 am

Event Details

Virtual coffee talk

Stories connect and inspire us. Through words, pictures, graphics, and sounds, stories expose and challenge us to understand worlds, lifestyles, and experiences we might never know otherwise. They provide meaning and connection, transmit cultural values and uphold traditions. As children, they teach us societal norms and lull us to sleep; as adults, they empower us to act, pull us away from to-do lists, and share universal truths that link us, regardless of age, race, gender, ability, and religion, and economic status.

As we continue to build and live in echo chambers, narratives spark empathy, self-discovery, and action. This session will create a safe, empowering space for participants to consider the power of their own stories and encourage them to consider how storytelling — a timeless tradition — can help us better understand ourselves, break down barriers, build community, and inspire others to act.

Learning Objectives

  1. The basic elements of a compelling story and how to use compelling stories to reach your goals (inspire empathy, understanding, action, entertainment, etc.)
  2. The importance of integrating story more intentionally into workplaces and classrooms. And how to do it!
  3. How to conduct a meaningful interview.
  4. To use story to build community.
  5. Engage storytelling as a way to successfully navigate difficult conversations.
  6. To consider the power of their own story in the direction and meaning of their lives.

This program is ideal for: 

  • Coaches and educators seeking to integrate story more intentionally into their practices and classrooms.
  • Organizational leaders, managers, and marketers responsible for capturing stories and transforming them into strategic communications that educate and encourage action. Students, faculty, and community members interested in better understanding the timeless tradition of storytelling.
  • Those interested in learning how to interview others and share compelling stories in meaningful ways.
  • Civic and educational leaders looking to encourage greater mutual understanding throughout our community.
  • Activists seeking to foster greater compassion and engage others in difficult conversations.


About Our Facilitator

Kate H. Elliott coordinates Ball State University’s Department of Journalism’s Magazine Media concentration and chairs the College of Communication, Information, and Media (CCIM) Engagement Task Force. Since 2018, Elliott has supported Ball State’s historic partnership with Muncie Community Schools as faculty fellow to the MCS-Ball State Academic Innovation Council. Alongside teachers, administrators, and community partners, Elliott is working to realize a holistic educational system that nurtures student success and community wellbeing.
In the classroom, Elliott is driven to outfit the next generation of storytellers and strategists with the confidence, expertise, and connections to lead competitive, in-demand fields. Facilitation of several immersive experiences reflects Elliott’s commitment to community-focused storytelling. In fall 2017, she guided a team of student journalists to profile farmers, nonprofit leaders, residents in food deserts, and more as part of a storytelling movement to share the challenges and opportunities within Muncie’s food system. In spring 2016, she worked with students to advance the reach and reputation of Muncie nonprofit, ecoREHAB.

Prior to teaching, Elliott served as a communications manager and alumni magazine editor for Ball State and Valdosta State universities. She has received numerous national and regional journalism and community service awards.


June 15, 2021 8:00 am - 9:30 am