Pioneer Prize Holds Design-Thinking Workshops

Over the past weekend, Pioneer Prize 2021, a Blue Hill Community Development-sponsored project, hosted two design-thinking sessions with student participants. These sessions premiered a new way to engage and connect with Pioneer Prize participants and to inspire and explore their ideas as they dig in to the 2021 coding competition.

Facilitated by Todd Gilmour and Eli Baird—local, active professionals in the digital experience-design and solution-architecture arenas—the design-thinking sessions introduced the students to rapid methods for tightly defining a problem and developing research on how the problem is affecting others as well as themselves. Participants then created a series of “lateral explorations” on how they might approach a solution using notes and sketches, before being asked to step away and bring their best ideas together into one proposed solution. Participants can then use that work to create the final submission by writing code. During the entire competition participants can also reach out to their individual mentor, a locally based digital professional.

After a long day of working with students, Gilmour said, “It was so great to see some of the students just absorb and adopt the process and then quickly adapt it to their individual needs—I’m always interested in helping foster creativity and exploring potential solutions with people who are engaged and this was an especially inspiring day.”

Read more about the Pioneer Prize competition.

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