Day26- Orientation

Getting a feel for Watson & the surrounding area

Aug. 30th, 2016

I left my last post with a simple idea, maybe I should work with the people I’m working with, in the place that I’m living. These people could be my new customers. Makes sense when you think about it.

Today was a good day. Started off with a little orientation on Watson, an introduction to the team, an explanation of the courses we would take, a problem-solving group activity, a meeting with a Watson alum at Spark Boulder, a cultural workshop, and some goal-setting homework. A full day, a good day with new experiences and insights.

First, lets start with the Watson orientation. Put plainly, I think Watson is going to be awesome. The Watson team is super inspiring & caring. These people are good people, and they have produced really incredible results. The story and mission behind Watson is something that I want to very much get behind. I believe what they believe. Also, the curriculum sounds like my dream curriculum, teaching the sort of entrepreneurial stuff that I so greatly yearned for in my traditional university education.

The group problem-solving activity was fun too. As a group, we were given simple rules, and through experimentation, we learned to think outside the box and reorganize so that we could more effectively achieve the game’s objectives. The key takeaway: potential is often restricted because we box ourselves in. We create our own rules, our own restrictions, our own barriers, when these things in reality are fabricated and self-imposed. If we choose to let go, and see the bigger picture, then we can more fully realize ourselves and our ideas.

Made a trip to Spark Boulder, where I met with two Watson Alumni: Danny & Anthony from SparkBoulder and JumpStart!Boulder. Both organizations work with CU-Boulder students, supporting the work of student social entrepreneurs. We had really good conversations, and are excited to see how we may be able to collaborate in the weeks or months to come. Similar objectives, similar passions. Always good stuff when you share these qualities.

The cultural workshop was neat. We explored cultural behaviors, prejudices, tendencies, and questions. By exploring these topics, we became more aware of our culturural identities as individuals, and how these lens very much shape how we view and experience the world. If we learn to think outside of ourselves, then we can begin to appreciate similarities rather than differences between people across cultures. This kind of intercultural communication is so critical. I enjoyed the workshop.

And lastly, the goal-setting homework. By Thursday we have to answer some tough questions: what are our goals for this semester? What are our goals for the next 10 years? How are we going to measure these goals, and what may be some ways to achieve them? These are great questions. This is exactly what I need. A little push to think more critically both about the short-term and long-term game plan.