Priorities:Foothill College Student Priorities
To go about analyzing the Innovation and Entrepreneurship ecosystem of Foothill College, to identifying and addressing the college's most pressing needs, we decided to use the power of empathy and interviewing. Instead of making assumptions to draw conclusions, we collected real student and faculty feedback to identify a need pattern that calls for change and betterment. The people that get affected or are somewhat intertwined with our project idea make up our stakeholder list, from which they are categorized based on hierarchy, priority, and/or impact level.
Our first project proposal come to the surface during our investigation and creation of the Landscape Canvas. It was quite surprising to witness how the pandemic served as a threshold of disconnectedness and less interaction amongst students. Suddenly, the pre-existing resources, or new opportunities for student involvement and initiation became scarce and invisible. After a couple interviews with students, we concluded the following: students feel disengaged in class and only do it to get the creds, there is plenty of student talent to demonstrate but little visibility on how and where to share it, the facebook page that previously connected the student body is inactive and no one engages in student posts, international students feel lost and want to get helped and help others. The synopsis of our findings indicate that there is a lacking sense of Community at Foothill College, which is, in part, due to the effects of the pandemic on the college ecosystem. Our prototype idea suggests a modern platform where students share their passion projects, create learning groups, and share announcements, news, and student life events. If that was to succeed, students would ultimately feel more connected to their peers and more engaged in the college's activities.
Our second project proposal resulted from more in depth analysis of the organization and clubs that exist on campus and whether they appeal to students or not. To collect data, we got insight from presidents and people with experience leading clubs, we interviewed students involved in clubs and organization of Foothill, and we observed club meetings with the leading questions, "Do people want to come back? Do they feel connected to one another?" We come down to the following findings: students tend to trust what already exists at the school, there needs to be more connection among members of a club (often happens more organically with a religiously or culturally affiliated group of people with similar passions and visions), students like the concept of innovation and design thinking could benefit them, and there are needs on campus that are not getting addressed. We concluded that at this stage of Foothill's community engagement innovative spirit, it is crucial to approach this from in out - meaning from diving in and addressing the needs to bettering our school community. So, our project idea is related the the reactivation of the ENACTUS club for the following reasons: students trust the mission and concept of ENACTUS, which in turn is very similar to UIF, the structure of ENACTUS gives us some consistency, budget, and credibility, there are way more funding possibilities if efforts come through a school club, it's so much more powerful to end the year with multiple projects instead of just one, and if we want to include student voices in the project, we have to meet them where they are!