Words and photos by: Katie Ferraro
Just before our Year 2 students in Los Angeles headed to winter break, we loaded up the city bus and began the journey to the Huge LA offices to meet up with their team. This was our second meeting with the staff and now that we had gotten to know each other, we jumped into the principles of design thinking with both feet. Our students, though reserved at first, brought their insights as community members after interviewing their peers on the biggest concerns they face today.
To watch the process unfold was magic. Seeing our students’ preceding work come together & start to open up was so cool to watch. However, the most special part of the experience was feeling the pure joy exuding from the pros as they led the process. It’s clear the Huge team loves to create, and their passion was evident as they collaborated with our Stokers.
Huge really showed up for our youth and the amount of energy they brought to our day together was electrifying! They joined our students in the trenches, leading by example, and brought so much excitement to the development of their brands. Energy is one of our core values and it’s always refreshing to partner with brands like Huge that mirror that.
During the meeting we used our design thinking curriculum created by Huge which allows our students to think outside the box and voice their ideas, no matter how far fetched they may sound. With this type of brand (and character) development, it is imperative for our students to collaborate with their teammates in a unique way, seeing things from different perspectives. So far, it has proven to be a great exercise in teamwork, something that STOKED highly values and will serve our students well in the future.
When the meeting wrapped, both of our teams successfully uncovered their future brand ideals in the form of powerful problem statements to drive their projects. While I don’t want to give too much away just yet, for them, it was all about connection. It was really inspiring to hear the issues our students will tackle with their brands. I cannot wait to share how their brands develop in the next few months!