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Cultivating Brilliance

Photo by Carl Socolow '77.

Photo by Carl Socolow '77.

Deadline approaches to register for Innovation Competition

by MaryAlice Bitts-Jackson

Calling all trailblazers! The heat is on, as the countdown to the Innovation Competition at Dickinson (IC@D) begins. A year in the making, IC@D is led by Eddie Finocchiaro ’15, Alex Torelli ’16 and Philip Velez ’15, who wanted to help spark and support student-led businesses, processes, services and initiatives. Monday, Feb. 9, marks the official start—and the final day you may register online to join the action, if you have ideas and/or talents to share.

If you register your team by Monday, you’ll have a chance to work with students from different majors to develop an idea and submit it digitally to the judges; you also can tap campus experts through groups such as the Idea Fund and the Student Investment Group. If your team’s plan and progress make it to the second round, you’ll have the luxury of honing your idea with an alumni mentor who’s an expert in venture capital and/or entrepreneurism. Teams that advance to the third round vie for a $2,000 prize.

IC@D organizers held a pre-kickoff mixer in the Rector Atrium Thursday night, where contestants could register online and introduce themselves to potential teammates. (Interested students who could not attend may still register through Monday; those who have not yet found teammates may discover like minds through the event’s Facebook page.)

Noah Thompson ’17 and Abbey Fisler ’17 both arrived with ideas at the ready. Thompson, who majors in English and art & art history, hopes to create an executive board to run Project Storytime while he studies abroad next year, while Fisler (Italian studies, international studies and environmental studies) is searching for a business-savvy student to help her strategize her as-yet top-secret idea.

Other students, like Allison Roberto ’18, an undeclared major with Peddler experience, and Abigail Hsieh ’17, a computer-science major, hope to contribute skills that could help bring someone else’s stellar idea to life. “I have a lot of ideas, but I really like helping to cultivate brilliance—I’ve been brilliance-adjacent my whole life,” Roberto explained with a laugh, adding that the inventive projects brewing at the Idea Fund played an important role in her decision to attend Dickinson. “It’s always good to help make something happen, to be part of a brilliant team.”

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Published February 6, 2015