Unlike many of the participants in this project, I have not taken IDP 316 and I was unfamiliar with the design process. It was difficult not being able to share the same terminology and understanding as others in the group. Even though I had some exposure to the design process as an Engineering B.S. student, I never before went out and interviewed my targeted users, nor did I spend so much time talking to about feelings and attitudes with the members of the group as the project proceeded. In most engineering projects, some part of the road marks are already laid out for us and we had to use our mathematical skills to help pave the road towards the end goal. As a result, this entire semester was a huge learning curve to me. I was exercising a different part of my brain and sometimes it was struggle and sometimes I felt like the best thing ever.
It was honestly very challenging not being to focus on one idea, when we had some great ones in the beginning. I felt Smith ReACT was not as strong of a final piece as we could have made it, because we kept changing our ideas over and over again, wasting more time as we struggled to come up with one we liked. I know the ideate process is an iterative process, but it was hard starting from square one every few weeks. During the two rounds of empathising, I spent a lot talking with the Smith community and the group I was apart of had an amazing time ideating every time. It was one of the most exciting and creative times I had ever had at Smith! I was most interested in creating a pop-up dome structure that different events can be held in or the red thread map. I hope someday we can bring to life some of these great ideas in the future, especially as the weather gets warmer.
Smith ReACT was interesting because I never felt complete ownership of the event. The proposed day of the event was when I was going to my naturalization interview in Lawrence, Massachusett and I knew beforehand I could not be at the actual event, so I chose not to lead a project. When it was changed to Thursday, I did not feel I had enough time to put something together I was passionate about. For the event, I helped with creating the stencils and manning the Design Thinking table.