2014-2015 Innovation Grants

During the 2014-15 academic year, the Babson/Olin/Wellesley Three College Collaboration offered two rounds of Presidential Innovation Project Fund Grants—one in the Fall, the other in the Spring.

All proposals were reviewed by the college Provosts, BOW administration, and the BOW Faculty Steering Committee.  

A total of $20,098 was awarded.

The project titles, team members and their affiliations are:

Mix and Stir: Trios, composers, poets, actors in concert (AY 2015-16)

Mix and Stir connects an ensemble of musicians, composers, poets, and actors from Babson, Olin, and Wellesley to create two exciting performances during AY 15-16 to be held at Olin College.   In 2013-14, Olin acquired a Steinway B concert piano in Milas Hall and initiated the Ann Schaffner Concert Series.   Babson and Wellesley have hosted 3-College concerts in the past, and now Olin can offer an event to the 3-College Collaboration that will involve participation from multiple constituencies:  students, staff, and faculty.  These performances will introduce the BOW community, as well as our neighbors in Needham and Wellesley, to a new concert venue, a new concert series, and two cross-disciplinary musical/literary/theatrical events. 

The project is self-contained and even contributes financially to its budget by tapping $1000 from the Ann Schaffner Concert Series Fund.

The assessment plan has been designed so it not only evaluates the effectiveness of Mix and Stir, but also encourages others in the BOW community to step up with their own project ideas that they can then bring to fruition.

In short, by producing two multidisciplinary concerts as tangible outcomes, Mix and Stir provides access, opportunity, and creative channels for those who work, teach, and learn at Babson, Olin, and Wellesley, while enabling them to collaborate in a new venue, as part of a new concert series, and with a new Steinway B concert piano.

Project team
Team Leader:  Diana Dabby
Title:  Music Program Director and Associate Professor
BOW Institution:  Olin College of Engineering
College Address:  MH 269, Olin Way, Needham, MA 02492
Phone Number:  (781) 292-2551 (Olin)   
Email Address:  diana.dabby@olin.edu

Triple Helix Trio (violin, cello, piano).  Lois Shapiro, Piano Faculty, Wellesley (BOW contact)

Martin Brody, Catherine Mills Davis Chair, Wellesley
Diana Dabby, Music Program Director, Olin 
Jenny Johnson, Assistant Professor, Wellesley

3 student composers (to be mentored by the above faculty composers)

Poets and Actors from the Babson-Olin-Wellesley communities.  

Joint Development of Common Technology (AY 2014-15)

The purpose of this grant fund joint development of a technology that in support of faculty and student research in multiple colleges and in multiple disciplines.   Our goal for the project itself is to focus initially on the research needs of faculty at two colleges, but to frame the project reviews as open BOW events to engage all members of the BOW community.  

The particular technology we are planning to produce is an inexpensive GPS system with improved positional accuracy for use in faculty and student projects.

Team leaders:
Alex Morrow, Olin College
Katrin Monecke, Wellesley College

Team members:
Zhecan Wang and Ziyi Lan, students, Olin College

Problem Solving Showdown (Spring 2015)

 Problem Solving Showdown aims to inspire creative thinking among high school students through mentorship of college students from BOW colleges. Students will need to find a solution to a common social problem, such as the lack of access to clean water globally. This twenty-four hour competition will focus solely on the ideation process and help promote BOW colleges to prospective high school students, while allowing BOW students to collaborate with each other. Our aim is to bring a diverse group of high school students to BOW colleges to learn more about the college experience and develop important life skills.

Team leaders:
Dan Coley, student, Babson College

 Prabha Dublish, student, Babson College

Team members:
Nijanth Velmanikandan, Jamie Traverso, Michael Rothstein, Students, Babson College
Shaina Ma, Student, Wellesley College
Melissa Manwaring, Professor, Babson College
William Huss, Professor, Babson College

Cross-Campus Club Funding (Spring 2015)

Requested funding to support events sponsored by clubs from different campuses and to incentivize cross campus club events. We’re hoping that this will both show students that collaboration can be easy and rewarding and to plant seeds for further collaboration in the future. While extra funding would work, we’d also like to host an event that attracts club leaders from the three campuses to come and meet each other and see if there is potential for collaboration.

Team Leader: Shane Skikne, Olin College

Team members: 
Christopher Maddox, VP of Campus Activities, Babson
Charlotte Harris, College Gov’t VP, Wellesley
Mitch Ciemenski, Organizer and Campus Promoter, Olin
Arjun Rajesh, Organizer and Campus Promoter, BOW student ambassador, Babson

Three College Collaboration Weekend Shuttle (Spring 2015)

The Three College Collaboration Weekend Shuttle is an effort to better the communication
between the students at Babson, Olin, and Wellesley. The initiative’s main focus is to
promote interactions between the students of the three institutions by making it easier for
students to visit the other colleges. We believe that this will result in sustained collaboration
at the student level, thereby enhancing the Babson-Olin-Wellesley relationship.

View the new shuttle hours HERE.

Team leaders:
Ian Hill and Arjun Rajesh, BOW student ambassadors, Olin and Babson Colleges.


BOW Big Ideas for Busy People 2 (AY 2015-6)

This proposal is for the second running of a BOW event called “Big Ideas for Busy People”. The event consists of an evening of talks given by BOW faculty and staff in which individuals share their ideas with the community in the form of short talks. The “big ideas” presentations reflect a diversity of interests across fields of the BOW community. The purpose of this event is to highlight community ideas and perspectives and to bring the community together around the discussion of innovative ideas and to develop points of connection across a wide range of disciplines. Due to the overall success in bringing faculty and staff together for lively discussions at the first "Big Ideas for Busy People” last year, this proposal is for support of a second running this year.

Team Leader: 
Jean Huang, Assistant Professor of Biology, Olin College

Team members:

 Verónica Darer, Senior Lecturer of Spanish, Wellesley College 
Oscar Fernandez, Assistant Professor of Math, Wellesley College 
Sinan Erzurumlu, Associate Professor of Technology and Operations Management, Babson College 
Rick Cleary, Professor and Chair of Mathematics and Science, Babson College 
Yevgeniya V. Zastavker, Associate Professor of Physics, Olin College 
Jean Huang, Assistant Professor of Biology, Olin College

Engineering Consulting for Technology Ventures (Spring 2015) 

The goal of our project is to encourage collaboration between Babson and Olin students by
offering a platform that matches business and engineering students based on similar interests or
advice needed in a certain technological industry. Olin students would provide consulting advice
for Babson students and assist with developing venture ideas.

Team leaders: 
Christina Gee, student, Babson College
Janie Harari, student, Olin College


Rethink Education (March 2015)

Rethink Education is a weekend workshop crafted to give local undergraduates the opportunity to think critically about revamping the K-12 education space through user-oriented design. Under the mentorship of top New England designers, educators, and innovators, students will collaborate to bring their ideas for change closer to reality. With skill-building design workshops held throughout the weekend, students will leave with the design tools and thinking process that will enable them to tackle large problems and create meaningful change. With any luck, a few of the raw ideas and teams formed over the course of the weekend will continue on in the form of longer term projects for education reform, and the simple act of thinking through these problems will spark important conversations at Babson, Olin, and Wellesley.

Team leaders:
Celine Ta & Liani Lye, students, Olin College

Team members:
Madison May, student, Olin College
Michael Ninh, student, Babson College

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