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Binghamton University Student Priorities

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Overview

Binghamton University project pitch video:

In addition to our project pitch, we have recently launched a Tumblr to connect students to innovation and entrepreneurship with resourses both on and off of campus. The page, named whyinnovatioaims to engage students in a casual way and provide access to beneficial sources. We hope to inspire our fellow students to get involved with the untapped entrepreneurial community here at Binghamton.

Landscape Canvas Synthesis

In order to complete programming for the 2017-2018 academic year, we have consulted the landscape synthesis in order to make changes most needed by our campus.Landscape Synthesis.png

Pop-Up Innovation Exercises

According to our Landscape Canvas Sysnthesis (attached image), our campus struggles most strongly with:

  • Collaboration
  • Knowledge of existing resources
  • Drive or enthusiasm to pursue entrepreneurship
  • Enterpreneurship programs
  • Access to resources to pursue entrepreneurship

In order to address a lack of entrepreneurship programs, we were inspired by Tom Wujec from Autodesk's Pop-Up creative exercises, such as the Marshmallow Challenge or Drawing Toast. We believe that a program of multiple exercises across campus will inspire people to engage with innovation and entrepreneurship through exposure to entrepreneurship programs.

Timeline for Pop-Up Exercises

In order to impliment these programs, we have created a timeline in which we can follow to implement these changes. We hope to launch more of these interactive events in the near future, starting in the current semester.

  • Goal 1: Brainstorm and design or adapt previously made challenges for our campus community [Next 2-3 weeks]
  • Goal 2: Test challenges on focus groups from each area of academia [Before the end of the month]
  • Goal 3: Reach out to organizations and professors to run the activities [1.5 months away]
  • Goal 4: Create advertisements and student awareness of events [2 weeks after Goal 3 is reached]
  • Goal 5: Run a series of "prototype" runs across campus [2 weeks after Goal 4 is reached]
  • Goal 6: Disseminate surveys to participating and students for event revision, questions, and comments [1 week after events are ran]

Innovation Awareness

We would like to encourage students to become more aware of entrepreneurship on campus; this comes through increased advertising, both by word of mouth and by professors. Through the support of academic faculty, we believe that students will become more curious and seek the plethora of opportunities and resources that our school has recently invested in.

In the recent years, Binghamton has made great strides within the university as well as in the local area. The Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship has made efforts to partner with local organizations and increase innovation in the southern tier of New York state. There have been new grants created, new contacts made, and opportunities for students to get involved. Innovation awareness is important for our campus; the timeline below articulates how we expect to move forward with such a pursuit.

Timeline for Innovation Awareness

  • Goal 1: Conduct research and make a list of faculty contacts [should take around 2 weeks to complete]
  • Goal 2: Compose e-mail directories and inquire about offering information about the Office of I&E and other entrepreneurial resources on campus [one week after the contact list is created]
  • Goal 3: Create survey/information sheet to give out to willing professors; information should tell students about available resources and should be available on campus billboards or campus newspaper [3 week process]
  • Goal 4: Consult faculty contacts over whether or not it was discussed; send out surveys that ask them their opinions about innovation, entrepreneurshp, and how it was received in their organizations or classes [2 weeks after the completion of Goal 3]
  • Goal 5: Create connections with interested students; ask them about their experiences and create a community on social media of interested participants [1 week after the completion of 4]
  • Goal 6: Have a community of curious and energetic students that would like to partake in events in the surrounding area; utilizing the resources that we have on campus [continual process; building upon the completion of Goal 5]

Central Innovation Agency

Binghamton has a lot to offer current students; however, these resources are scattered and not cohesive. Many student groups and campus facilities promote innovation and entrepreneurship, but they are unaware of the presence of one another. The fellows in the Spring of 2017 proposed the creation of the Binghamton Central Innovation Agency (hereinafter BCIA) that would promote collaboration across student groups, with the ultimate goal of creating a cohesive, galvanized, and productive innovative and entrepreneurial community.

residential Entrepreneurship Learning Community and Enactus, a social entreprenurial group on campus. These groups have not collaborated in the past, yet, have similar themes and goals surrounding entreprenurial ventures and community growth in this regard.

Timeline for the Binghamton Central Innovation Agency

  • Goal 1: Conduct research and sent out an e-blast to all campus communities asking for interest in becoming a member of the BCIA [1-2 weeks]
  • Goal 2: For interested groups, maintain contact and ask them to provide a "synopsis" on their goals and how they fit into the entreprenurial community and for the resources that they offer students [3 weeks after the completion of Goal 1]
  • Goal 3: Create a website for the BCIA, with links to these organizations and what they offer for students [2 week process; ongoing in the future]
  • Goal 4: Become chartered by the student government as a recognized club; this will allow the BCIA to gain advertising leverage and the opportunity to use campus spaces for meetings and events [typically takes a semester; this can be ongoing throughout the process]
  • Goal 5: With BCIA members, coordinate a meeting to brainstorm and organize collaborative events [1 week, following Goal 2]
  • Goal 6: Once everyone is able to meet, hold the initial "BCIA Conference" which launches various innovative collaborations between student groups on campus; this will provide students wtih access and exposure to campus groups both on their own and as a collaboration with another group [1 month to coordinate, event held after organizations link up]

Binghamton University Makerspace

In order to encourage students across campus to innovate and design no matter their area of study, we would like to move towards the creation of an open Makerspace on campus. While we have several spaces on campus, such as the STEAMroom, many students do not use this or feel that it is not conducive to studying or design. Rather, while useful, that space focuses on creation based on various hobbies that students may have.

As fellows, we would like to create a Makerspace in line with Stanford's model. They offer rooms for different majors, with appropriate materials for different areas of study. They have open spaces, walls with whiteboards, and furniture that is conducive to motion and unorthodox creation. We feel that this will inspire students to work more collaboratively whether it is for entreprenurial ventures, their studies, or hanging out with friends.

This is an ambitious undertaking, and something that will undoubtedly take a lot of time. However, we feel that we can begin the process and continue, hopefully with the help of past and future fellows.

Timeline for Makerspace Creation

  • Goal 1: Coordinate a meeting with the university President or Provost to discuss funding and space availability on campus [1-2 weeks to impliment]
  • Goal 2: Once a space is alloted, blueprint plans can be commenced [3 weeks to plan; will require revision according to budget planning and university policy on construction, furniture, and time constraints]
  • Goal 3: Conduct research with students; see if interest is piqued-- perhaps have a trial period where students can critique and add their thoughts to the space, through the dissemination of a survey [1 month]
  • Goal 4: Once a space is approved officially by the university and unofficially by the student body, the furniture and equipment can be purchased and ordered to the university [1-3 months, depending on time constraints and availability]
  • Goal 5: Start to disseminate advertisements across campus [ongoing process, can be commenced once Goal 4 is completed]
  • Goal 6: Coordiate with entrepreneurial organizations on campus and the incubator downtown to design a launch event [1 month]
  • Goal 7: Once the space is completed, the event planned in Goal 6 can be the initial event in the makerspace [2 months, depending on construction process and coordination]


While this is a large undertaking, we believe that we have the power to create a workspace that is interactive and conducive to student innovation. With the training of our past fellows and the example of Stanford's d.School, we believe that we have the tools and ambition to bring such a space to campus, and hope that community industries and organizations will provide assistance through blueprint revision, funding, and support, no matter the means.

Related Links

Spring 2017 UIF Candidates:

David Axelrod

Mauricio Morales

Judah Berger

Spring 2018 UIF Candidates:

Hannah Werner

Shabienska Achil

David Jacobson

Vivian Wu