The Cornell Solar Decathlon
Fellows: Nicole Craddock, Robert Petrina
The 2007 Cornell University Solar Decathlon (CUSD) project concluded in mid-October after a successful week long inter-collegiate competition held in Washington, D.C.. Cornell participated in the competition with an energy independent home spanning 650 square feet and featuring a unique detached solar covered canopy. The house was designed, built, and exhibited by a team comprised of more than 120 students representing 7 Cornell schools. The Park Fellows were responsible for the marketing and fundraising activities. The major marketing function centered on a comprehensive website that included all of the team's activities, including strategy, design, project updates, and fundraising. The fundraising activities succeeded in securing more than $120K in cash donations and $80K in materials in kind. The Web site placed 3rd overall which was the best performing element for the Cornell team.
The Cornell Automotive X-Prize
Fellows: Kyle Rasmussen
The Cornell Automotive X-Prize Project's vision is to design a 100 mpg-equivalent automobile that will reduce global non-renewable energy consumption and harmful emissions. The project involved playing a leadership role in building a team of over 70 Cornell students from varying educational backgrounds, including engineering, architecture, human ergonomics, and business to design an automobile that will push the limits of efficiency, feature a distinctive and unique aesthetic design, and be commercially viable in the marketplace. The Cornell AXP is currently 1 of only 60 teams accepted worldwide through the Letter of Intent Program of the Automotive X Prize Competition, and the team has gained the sponsorship of GE, Popular Mechanics, The Triad Foundation, Cornell University, National Instruments, Tektronix Inc., Toyota, Autodesk Inc., Lockheed Martin, and First Manhattan. Cornell AXP is the only university team worldwide to be accepted into the competition.
Dividends Through Dialogue
Fellows: Nkeruka Okonmah-Sanders, Shahnaz Shushtari
Building on last year's successful Dialogos Project, Dividends Through Dialogue expanded efforts to promote the appreciation of diversity and create an environment where Johnson MBA students learned to know one another beyond the context of their professional aspirations and achievements. The program focused on developing effective communication, appreciation for diversity, and greater personal efficacy through story telling, exercises, and individual goal-setting. The Park Fellow team modified the curriculum for the one day off-campus retreat, added an on-campus event through the support of a P&G diversity grant, and conducted two events open to the entire Johnson community. There were 42 participants and the programs proved very successful. The School is now considering ways of scaling up the activity next year to reach even more participants.
Office of Diversity and Inclusion Website
Fellow: Dawn Randall
In an effort to expand the School's ability to attract minority and Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender MBA candidates, this project focused on designing a website that serves as a virtual point of contact for resources for the current student body. The website acts as an initial point of contact for information related to diversity resources for both prospective students and current MBAs. Features include a view of student life, faculty and staff engagement with diversity issues, application guidance from admissions, current students and alumni, and interactive blogs and chat rooms among faculty, staff, students and MBA candidates. The forecasted launch date of the site is the Fall 2008 semester.
DeWitt and Boynton After School Business Program
Fellows: Daniel Lentz, Melissa Sommers
Building on last year's effort, this project continued to develop an interactive business education program for Dewitt and Boynton Middle Schools' after-school programs. The after-school programs, sponsored by Tompkins Community Action, act as educational safe havens for middle-schoolers during the vulnerable late-afternoon hours -- a time when many of its participants would otherwise be subject to the risks of abuse, negative peer pressure, drugs, etc. The project focused on delivering a business curriculum for the middle schools and creating a greater relationship between the Cornell Community and the local middle school programs. Two Cornell teams visited the schools weekly to teach over 40 children the principles of business in a team-based, fun environment. The curriculum was similar to the Park Fellowship Program's finalist weekend activities, combined with activities facilitated by the Cornell Outdoor Education group. The semester of visits culminated with the student teams competing to become the most "profitable" enterprise to win a small monetary award.
Career Management Website
Fellows: Greg Foster, CJ Martin
The purpose of the project is to assist the Johnson Career Management Center in evaluating and recommending ways in which the on-line recruiting site can be optimized. Activities involve soliciting feed back from students with their experience with the current platform and reviewing different platforms (functionalities, etc.) in order to find the optimal "combination" of functions. The goal is to find the most powerful, useful, and intuitive platform that will greatly maximize the on-line recruiting experience for both students and staff. The benefits will provide a more efficient conduit in which students can match their career interests with the needs of employers.
The Paleontological Research Institute Marketing Plan
Fellows: Philip Haar, John Paul, Clint Stone
This team of Park Fellows conducted a comprehensive assessment of the Paleontological Research Institute's marketing and visitor tracking processes for the Institutes' Museum of the Earth and public education programs. The purpose of the effort was to address three questions: 1) Given current income levels, what is the best marketing strategy, 2) What are the most effective uses of limited marketing dollars, and 3) What is the market picture now of visitors, members and donors, and where should it be in reaching PRI's long term goals? These long term goals include raising an $8 million endowment, increasing visitors to 60,000 per year, increasing membership to 3,000 and raising $400 thousand consistently in the annual fund. After analyzing historical visitor data and gathering information from a number of different sources, the team prepared and made recommendations to the entire staff.
Southside Community Center Entrepreneurship Program
Fellow: Kenneth Cox
The Southside Community Center, Inc., affirms, empowers, and fosters the development of self pride among the African-American citizens of greater Ithaca. Through forums and activities in education, recreation, political and social awareness, the Southside Community Center is a community resource center. This project focused on developing entrepreneurship awareness by conducting an interactive workshop with the youth of the Center focusing on the advantages of entrepreneurship, and developing a snack bar for the Center where the youths could actually practice their entrepreneurship and management skills.
Fellow: Tej S. Bhattal
For the last twenty years, the Ithaca YMCA holds an annual triathlon as fundraiser for local charities. The goal for this year's event is to raise scholarship funds for underprivileged children in the community. The project focused primarily on raising visibility of the event through additional marketing and increasing connections with potential donors. Activities included creating a computer database for tracking and connecting with donors, calling local stores and businesses for sponsorship, recruiting volunteers to help with the event, and designing T-shirt logos, and assisting generally with every aspect of the even.
Johnson Personalized Admissions Team
Fellows: Chris Koza, Sarah Scudder
The goals of this project were to create a coordinated and consistent program in which all admitted students receive a personalized welcome to Johnson, and to establish "instant networks" among students and alumni based on geography and career interests. This effort involved conducting a needs assessment of the various stakeholders, and designing a database and interactive features of a networking program residing in the admissions office. The benefits include creating multiple touch points for personal interactions for admitted students, demonstrating the depth and breadth of the Johnson community to prospective students, and engaging the alumni in the recruiting of students. . The planned launch date of the program is fall 2008.
Carriage House Café Management Plan
Fellows: Anahita Gharabaghi, Amy Knapp
The mission of the Carriage House Café is to provide a place for the community members of the Crossroads Life Center to come together and share ideas and a meal. Over the last few years, it has grown substantially from a small bakery and café to a busy restaurant operating six days a week. The café reached its kitchen space capacity, and the lack of planning has contributed to growing problems in meeting customer and bottom line demands. This project identified, evaluated, and recommended a variety of strategies for improving financial management, marketing, service delivery, and human resource management practices.
Fellows: Pamela Hurwitch, Jessica Schoen
Compos Mentis, Latin for "in control of your mind," is a not-for-profit that offers a seasonal haven and place to enjoy the outdoors for young adults who have been diagnosed with depression, bi-polar disorder, Asperger's, or schizophrenia. It first opened for the summer of 2007 season. This project focused on assisting Compos Mentis with their business practices, particularly in developing efficient communication methods among volunteers, board members, and staff, identifying and maximizing contact with potential donors, and developing a sustainable business model for operations
Johnson Board Fellows
Fellows: Mark Hartman, Mythily Kamath
As future business leaders of American, Johnson MBA students will hopefully be socially involved and find ways to give back to their local community. To prepare them for this challenge, Johnson Board Fellows is an effort designed to give Johnson students an opportunity to serve on the boards of local non-profit organizations. Board Fellows gain hands-on experience as a non-voting board member and have the opportunity to connect with community and develop the tools for valuable community leadership throughout their careers. The intent is get students in the habit of contributing to non-profit organizations after they graduate from JGSM. This project focused on designing and launching a pilot program for this effort involving a handful of students chosen as Board Fellows and a small number of local non-profits. In the long term, the Johnson Board Fellows will be a student-run program, and expand to involve more students and non-profits.
Fellows: Jeff Fuchs, Elizabeth Langlois
Lingua Learning was first established several years ago as a Park Project. The mission of the organization if to provide immersion language courses for children in the Ithaca community between the ages of three and ten. While many immersion programs are very vocabulary intense and take place in a classroom, Lingua was designed to make the learning fun by learning languages through games and crafts. This project focused on resurrecting Lingua and it was re-launched in the spring of 2007 offering classes in Spanish, French, and Mandarin. The program ran eight classes each and attracted 48 students and was considered quite successful. Fall participation in the program fell off significantly as several elementary schools recognized the value of the program and began offering similar programs in-school.
Alternative Federal Credit Union Micro-Entrepreneurship Fund
Fellow: Jeff Fuchs
In conjunction with the Johnson Micro-finance Club, the goal of this project is to build a micro-entrepreneurship fund with the Alternative Federal Credit Union. The purposes of this fund are to stimulate economic activity and alleviate poverty in the Finger Lakes Region, and to enhance performance learning for Johnson students. The project focused on designing a program and overall strategy that would raise funding with an initial $25 thousand goal, create guidelines and goals for the fund, set up a process for reviewing business plans and proposals, and develop a feedback loop with donors on the status of the fund and businesses.