Leadership and innovation are often discussed in the professional world and in college classrooms.

But, what are the practical applications of these concepts in the real world?

Eastman Chemical Company and ETSU have recently announced a joint project called IDEAcademy, which will will explore ideas of leadership and innovation.

“The event will focus on leadership development, and the topics will center around leading change, leading innovation and what that looks like in a variety of careers,” said Amanda Allman, a spokesperson for Eastman.

The event is completely free and will take place in three separate locations. The main event, along with a free lunch, will be held at Eastman’s Toy F. Reid Employee Center in Kingsport on Wednesday, Sept. 14 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. On Sept. 13, The Foundation in Bristol will host a lunch from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. and the Millennium Center in Johnson City will hold a dinner from 5:30-7 p.m.

Allman said the event is open to anyone and anticipates that a variety of people will attend. 

“This is a great opportunity for students to network beyond the four walls of the classroom,” Allman said. “It’s an opportunity to meet people already in the professional field.”

Several speakers from both ETSU and Eastman will be featured alongside keynote speaker Randi Zuckerberg. Zuckerberg, who some may recognize as a spokesperson for Facebook, will be at all three events.

“We are excited to have her and her insights because she is a pioneer in social media marketing, founder of Zuckerberg Media and author,” Allman said. “We want to see what she has to share about the world of technology and leading change.”

Allman said ETSU and Eastman will host the event together and will present 12 speakers from diverse backgrounds.

“Dr. Noland will be presenting and serving as a host along with ETSU’s Dr. Dennis Depew and David Golden, corporate secretary at Eastman,” Allman said.

In addition to the hosts, the speakers will include an ETSU student, a professional storyteller, several ETSU professors, many business founders and representatives from Eastman.

A full list of speakers and registration information can be found at www.IDEAcademy.com. Those who wish to attend must register by Sept. 7.