Joseph Sapien

Day 1, Breakout Session 4

Abstract: We’ll go over, in broad strokes, classic three act American film structure, generally as it incorporates the idea of The Hero’s Journey, then specifically as that applies to the Peter Jackson film, The Fellowship of the Ring. Consideration will be given to how the creative process can be enhanced, working within a well delineated structure. Finally these lessons will be extended to our real lives: How can you apply the structural elements of the screenplay to achieve the goal of your own personal Hero’s Journey? What is your Ordinary World? Have you had an Inciting Incident yet? Can you create one? Who are your Threshold Guardians, and how do you find them? Not sure we can always find the answers, but asking the questions is a good starting framework.

Born in El Paso, Texas in 1980, Sapien at an early age was known as an artist and entrepreneur. In 2002 after receiving his Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Animation from the Art Institute of Phoenix, Sapien started his first of three businesses in Seattle, Washington, and led multimedia and brand development campaigns. In 2008  Sapien joined the Workforce Development Board and managed the Information Technology, External Relations, and Programs Departments.

During his ten years at Workforce, Sapien influenced over 50K youth to pursue viable career paths in STEAM, and entrepreneurship through project-based programs and initiatives. Sapien has over 17 years of experience launching high impact marketing and fund development campaigns generating over 3 million in revenue. Sapien strives to push the edge on innovation through VR, AR, and 3D competitions and summer camps.

In 2009 Sapien created the first in Texas Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Business Challenge which encouraged high school students to start businesses. The STEM Challenge was recognized in 2014 by the Texas Workforce Commission by winning the Industry Sector Outreach Award. Since 2015, Sapien has helped cultivate and increase the regional robotics market by increasing teachers’ capacity and providing teams with the necessary resources allowing them to compete at national and global levels. 

Currently, Sapien is designing and deploying three innovative programs.  

  • The first-in-the-world Augmented Reality Science Fair ( focused on climate change solutions.

  • Unicorn Academy, a self-learning entrepreneurship app, that teaches youth the Silicon Valley way to take ideas to billion-dollar businesses.

  • a social-emotional learning news platform that aims to help inspire teens while addressing mental health.

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