Entrepreneurs look for inspiration. The LaunchPad is a place where founders come together to find inspiration. Now, thanks to Vision, a pop-up installation this month at the Blackstone LaunchPad in Bird Library dynamically captured what inspires students at Syracuse University.
Vision, a student organization that promotes cross-campus entrepreneurship, hosted “Pop-Up Week,” kicking off with a post-it note takeover of the LaunchPad. The organization also sponsored pop-up events at the Whitman School of Management, iSchool and the Newhouse School which showcased popular technologies such as VR and geofilters, using Adobe products.
Vision posed the question: “What Inspires You?” Literally overnight, a post-it note blizzard covered the walls of the “glass cube” on the first floor of Bird Library. The rainbow confetti of postings continued through the week, with thousands of messages. Notes ranged from fun to the fantastical, and witty to whimsical. Many recognized family and friends who were mentors and sources of inspiration. Some were a nod to famous entrepreneurs and dreamers. Others spoke to individual dreams. More than a few referenced celebrities, television, film and sports stars. Some invoked the goodness of the human spirit, while others just captured the goofy mood of sleep-deprived students pulling all-nighters during finals week. Many saluted SU’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. Others were a shout-out to student entrepreneurs, ventures and team members. A large number talked about Orange Pride and a sense of belonging, community and collaboration that came out of being part of the University.
Collectively, the notes told the story of innovation, design, technology, leadership, enterprise and more. The installation itself was incredibly inspiring to the thousands of people who study and work at Bird Library during busy finals and exam weeks. It enlivened the space and engaged students in a colorful, interactive conversation, prompted by startup thinking.
The project emulated participatory public art projects that invite people to contemplate topics, reflect on life and share personal aspirations in public. The genre is a nod to artist Candy Chang and others who invite public discourse as a way to cultivate self-expression and engagement with others. Like similar installations, “Inspiration” at the LaunchPad produced reflections that ranged from lighthearted to poignant — and demonstrated colorful imaginations in literal and figurative senses.
Vision is a cross-campus student organization that encourages students to explore entrepreneurship. Led by Julia Dorie Haber, along with Dylan Gans and a team of students from various academic areas, Vision has created buzz through its innovative pop-up programming over the past two years. The group meets Monday evenings in the LaunchPad. Learn more at: http://visionforentrepreneurs.com/