CreateAthon promo video!!!
Tumblr founder, David Karp, wants to help us get the word out there about CreateAthon!!!!
The Gender Factor: Girls in STEM education
If Unique Perceptions and VASS were to partner up for something, I feel like this would be the result.
And while I may not be an expert on the services that Unique Perceptions provides, I definitely know VASS. VASS is definitely trying to push the growth of STEM opportunities in our schools in Virginia.
PS for more on Unique Perceptions Services check out http://aortathence.tumblr.com
A CreateAthon hero
This might sound cheesy, but seriously, Peyton is my hero.
I could seriously go on and on about her. Everyone always has that one teacher or that one professor that’s pushed them to excel, but at the same time, they’ve done it in a way that has made you love what you’re doing. I had a teacher in high school like that. He’s one of the reasons I’m a good writer and why I love English.
Peyton is the teacher that is your mentor and crazy friend all in one. She draws out the passion in you (and I mean this in a good way). Where others may not understand, or may want you to do things their way, she wants you to look inside yourself and explore further. She wants you to be the best you can be. And with everything that just happened with CreateAthon, I have to admire her even more. Giving time out of her schedule every year to help students that give back to nonprofits and the community, is something that cannot be overlooked. On a sidenote, I may be partial to the subject because I enjoy doing nonprofit work and giving back.
But nonetheless, in my eyes, Peyton is a hero.
So I’m supposed to talk about what I took away from CreateAthon.
I’ve sort of already done this, but I’ll go over it again briefly.
My biggest takeaways from CreateAthon, with this being my second year, is what changes when you turn from a team member, volunteering to help, to a team leader, running your team.
Last year, as a team member, volunteering to help out, there wasn’t as much stress.
Stress to complete the tasks, having finished products, everything ready for reviews. I knew that I had to complete those, but the stress on me was definitely not as great as the stress on my team leader last year.
This year, as a team leader, I can definitely understand what my leader went through last year. I’m someone who likes to figure things out on my own, being stubborn does that sort of thing to you, but I was constantly asking for help, something that I don’t normally do. I was asking constantly for feedback on the logo, help making the infographical poster, directions to go in, help with our website design, etc. I know for some people, asking for help is no big deal, but for me, it’s a huge thing.
The mentors were great at providing help though. For our brainstorming session, we were on a roll. We went through and drew all over the windows in Temple. Mind maps were spread across 4 panels of windows. We had a couple of mentors (including my team leader, Ally, from the previous year) stop by and see how we were doing, but like I said, we were on a roll.
The big glitches started to hit when we were trying to go through with executions it seems. We were disagreeing on colors, trying to figure out how to best portray a thought, all while trying to put together a cohesive campaign.
My team members were wonderful. I always have moments when working with people where there’s going to be disagreements, but that’s just part of working on a team. I did have a little bit of trouble working with my VSU student, but I’m betting that it’s partly because we were butting heads slightly, and also because he was one of 6 VSU students working with a ton of VCU students.
I will say that I started freaking out around 5 in the morning. No sleep and pressure getting to you, not a good combination. I’m pretty sure my team noticed too, and they definitely kept me in check. I have to thank them sooooo much for that.
But, around 11 we gave our presentation. Our clients were definitely thrilled. Not everything was finished, but I was forced to go home by Peyton. I’m pretty sure the exact words were “go home! go get some sleep!” and then 5 minutes later, since I’m still there, “you need to go get some sleep!”
So all in all, CreateAthon is definitely an experience that sticks with you. Definitely a different experience from my first year, when I was a volunteer/team member, but I’m actually grateful for the two different sides. I kind of understood what my team was going through, which I think helped make me a better leader for them.
The Event (part 1)
I know all of my previous posts are building up to the event of CreateAthon.
So now, taking you through the event and the craziness that happened.
(this will probably be split up into different parts so that way it isn’t one humongously long post.
(some of these pictures are mine, some aren’t)
the pre-CreateAthon jitters.. people arriving, handing stuff out, getting coffee and caffeine, and definitely just getting excited.
Mentors, team leaders, team member, and a couple of stragglers hanging around in the background, everyone is excited. And with something like this, how can you not be?!!
first things first, gotta get that group picture taken!! (and imagine trying to fit over 100 people into one picture)
So we split up into our teams after that. My team was in an extremely open space. The Hallway on the second floor of Temple. We did a little bit of chatting, talked about the brief, got comfy, went over what we would definitely be needing to accomplish.
Then, came the brainstorming. And since we didn’t have any whiteboards or chalkboards, we made use of what we did have.
We had people check in with us from time to time, going over brainstorming with us, and looking at different ideas and directions we had. We had people coming over, talking to us about logo design, different ideas to incorporate, and tons of different directions to go in.
And then, around 12, it was time for a break. Lunch. Which, VASS actually provided for us. YAY VASS! And you can guarantee, that with over 100 people, there were long lines waiting for food.
So people ate, relaxed for a bit, had some fun. We had bubbles going and were running up and down the halls.. and then about 30 minutes after that.. back to work!
Well, it has been about 17 hours post-CreateAthon. I left, after helping out people for a class from the previous summer, and after Peyton told me to go home and get some sleep. Knowing me, I would’ve stayed there helping out until 3 or 4 pm if I could’ve, but I got kicked out. (insert sad face here)
But I had left the building, walking home in what seems almost like a blur, and went upstairs to sleep. I slept for about 5 hours (which would explain why I’m awake now), and shockingly enough, I was dreaming about CreateAthon. I was seeing the event happening again, skipping through some parts, and highlighting others, and then seeing clients interacting with the CreateAthon leaders and members. I saw Ian’s client, Sportable, using the spokecards for the wheelchairs that his group made for them. I saw Curtis’s client, CAT, completely transformed. I saw my own client, VASS, out there, using the deliverables that we had made for them, gaining support, funding, and signing on with even more schools, helping more and more students to achieve their hopes and dreams.
I woke up after all this, and I was in this sort of enlightening haze. I felt like I was glowing on the inside (not radioactively or anything) from all the good that had just been accomplished earlier.
I also have to say that, when I woke up, I also felt sad. The event was over. I know that there’s changes that need to be modified and what not, but.. I still want to be doing this more often. Once a year just isn’t enough for me.
It’s getting so close to the event.. I’m starting to bubble over with anticipation!!
Just think. A whole new campaign in 24 hours time.
Losing an hour?
I’m so glad that the CreateAthon event doesn’t happen during daylights savings time.
I’m not sure I would be able to handle losing an hour. I mean, one precious hour. That’s a whole lot of work that can be accomplished in just 60 minutes. Especially when you’re creating a brand new campaign, from scratch, in 24 hours time.
Just something to think about.