Honors Program Theses


Open Access Honors Program Thesis

First Advisor

Nichole Zumbach Harken


I have always viewed myself as a creative person. Drawing, writing, and storytelling were the realms I thrived in growing up. I’m highly in tune with the part of myself that’s constantly coming up with new ideas, and I appreciate when I see creativity in others as well. But what I've noticed recently is that people often treat creativity as if it’s a trait that some have and others don’t. When you believe this, it becomes an easy way to brush off your own lack of artistic ability, but what else are you closing yourself off to? There must be more to creativity than perceived skill in the arts. Last year I took a class called Foundations of Positive Psychology with Gary Gute, who knows a ton about creativity. He opened my eyes to some of the misconceptions people tend to have, as well as to the relationship between creativity of mind and other facets of the human experience. This seemed like an exciting topic to explore, but I was apprehensive about committing to a daunting research project. Nikki Harken helped me flesh out some ideas for different creative forms my thesis could take, which were a lot more professionally relevant and interesting to me than a research paper. I eventually landed on the documentary format - it was a genre I had never explored before, and it would give me the opportunity to really develop some practical filmmaking skills while also getting to have interesting conversations on camera with people who fascinated me. I originally intended for the final product to convey more of a pointed overall message, but it turned out to be more of an explorative documentary looking at different people’s experiences with and perspectives on creativity. The documentary is 24 minutes long.

Year of Submission



Department of Communication and Media

University Honors Designation

A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the designation University Honors

Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (1 volume)

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License