Annual Applied Research Expo Shines Spotlight on Inclusivity

News May 2, 2022

Posted by Harrison Crerar

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As society emerges from a post-pandemic world, now is the perfect time to get those creative juices going for innovation.

Okanagan College is set to host the Research Innovation Partnerships Expo (RIPE) on Tuesday, May 10 – a free event for community members, industry, educators, researchers and students to network and learn about the impact of applied research.

Presentations cover a range of topics, from podcasting and applied research innovation, supporting inclusive workplaces, microplastics in Okanagan lake, engaging in education with young-adult cannabis consumers, and culturally responsive wellness initiatives through virtual reality.

“Collaboration is at the heart of all applied research, and RIPE offers Okanagan College an opportunity to showcase the innovation happening as a result of meaningful partnerships and relationships,” says Dr. Beverlie Dietze, OC’s Director of Learning and Applied Research.

This year’s theme for the virtual conference is “Imagining the Future,” and for keynote speaker Jesse Lipscombe, the future is inclusive.

Lipscombe is an actor, former athlete, activist and entrepreneur. He began his acting career at age 14 in the film, Children of the Dust, starring legendary actor Sidney Poitier. At 18, Lipscombe accepted a full athletic scholarship to Morehouse College in Atlanta, where he was a breakout track star. He continues to act while working in consulting, inspired by the #MakeItAwkward campaign he launched in 2016 to combat racism, misogyny, homophobia and hatred. In 2017, Lipscombe was the recipient of the Obsidian Award for Top Business Leader in Western Canada, as well as Community Man of the Year by Diversity Magazine.

Lipscombe will unpack his experiences in his keynote, entitled “Inclusive Innovation and the Creative Juice,” advocating for the need for a different and more inclusive lens at all stages of the creative process. His experience with innovation includes mobile games, film, television, table-top board games, music and novels, to name a few. Lipscombe will describe his process, the holes he has observed in the innovation landscape with respect to representation, as well as the secrets to unlocking the creative juices that are flowing in us all.

For details and to register, visit

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