When I was a kid I never thought about design, I just did it. It was an innate part of who I was. I remember always trying to find the most efficient ways to do things, I remember asking 'why' a lot, and I remember the satisfaction that came from solving problems.
Fast forward to college and having NO idea what I wanted to do with my life. But I was told that if I went to college, I'd get a good job and live a happy life, so I did. After college I got a job and life went on. A few years later I realized I was unhappy so I changed careers and I never looked back.
I often wonder how different my life would be if someone told me I could go back to my real self and actually solve problems and make the world a better place...AND earn a living doing it.
I realize this may sound cliche, but it is truly where the proverbial rubber meets the road for me.
IT ALL STARTED WITH A CONVERSATION
DESIGN FOR DELIGHT + AWESOME MATH ACADEMY
One day I was talking to a co-workers about this and she connected me to a different co-worker that had the same desire. So all three of us met and came up with an experiment to see if we could help our younger selves realize the possibilities and the many career options out there. Most importantly we wanted to teach them design thinking and problem solving.
So we partnered with Awesome Math Academy (AMA) in Plano, TX to offer a design thinking and problem solving course called "Problem Solving For Delight" at the AMA classrooms.
We ran two cohort sessions with students in junior high and high school. Each cohort lasted a few weeks and at the end the students presented their final prototypes and received a "Problem Solving for Delight" certification. The experiment was a huge success and all of the students and parents rated this program at the highest levels.