Spotlight: One day of Center Venture

Spotlight: One day of Center Venture

An intense day at the Center

For the elective course “Center Venture” 20 students of the CDTM work together to create a product from scratch in only one week. In order to do so they have to work highly effective with great commitment. Each day they come in at around 9 a.m. and only leave deep in the night. From the business model to the design and branding of the product to the coding everything is done by the students of the elective course themselves. At the end of the week they will show a finished product to the broad public.

 

What a good day to change the world

In this years’ Center Venture the objective is to build <a href=”www.eleza.org” target=_blank>eleza.org</a>, an online platform for solutions to the most pressing questions of the world. Everybody gathers in the morning, coffee in their hands in front of a giant board. It is the first SCRUM standup meeting of the day, full with colored sticky notes. The four sub team present what they are about to do during the day. Although some people are still sleepy from working over hours last night, there is a tension in the air. Everyone wants this project to become a huge success. After all the teams are on track and following some chats in the kitchen, the students occupy the center for work.

 

The CDTM Kitchen: The heart and sould of Center Life

The CDTM Kitchen: The heart and sould of Center Life

Good mood and serious topics

Team content has great vibes. As the name suggests, their job is to create the initial content for the platform. They want to focus on the current migration situation in Europe. To do so, they browsed the internet and made some field research. Sabine just came back from a refugee camp in the south of Munich. With a lot of new impressions, she feels somewhat overwhelmed by the atmosphere in the camp. In her talks with the inmate she sensed great thankfulness and great sorrow at the same time. Patrick is talking on the phone to a helper in a refugee camp in Lebanon. He talks about the challenges in the camp with over a million inhabitants. In the afternoon another student of the CDTM will join the team to help them with articles they found on the web in Arabic.

 

Discussion with former CDTM student Christian on his experiences of working in a refugee camp

Discussion with former CDTM student Christian on his experiences of working in a refugee camp

The mad men from marketing

Michael just leaves the room of team branding as he has to prepare lunch for the entire group. The rest of his team sits concentrated on their computers, creating traction for the project. From small things like writing blog posts to designing brand strategies and logos, branding is responsible for the visibility of eleza.org. So they are on the phone and exchanging mail with press contacts they target to report about the Center Venture. Sarah is running around. Her current task consists of taking footage for the Making-Of movie that will be released at after the week.

 

A gaze in the crystal ball

After lunch discussion arises. As it turns out the students did not agree on a feature that turns out to be significant in this very moment. For this special instance the input from the strategy team is required. Some people really commit to their role. This must be the reason why the guys from the strategy team look very serious. Most of their work is for the future. Christopher is working on a three-year vision for the organization. Hai and Chris on the other hand research a sustainable and scalable legal entity that can run the platform after this week. Their intense brainstorming session gets interrupted by an input session on co-creation. Also prepared by the students.

 

The ones that build the product

For dinner the students prepare slices of toasts to be heated in the sandwich maker. It is already close to 8 pm and all of them are still motivated to work on for some more hours. Nonetheless some need a creative break at the center’s foosball-table or the Super Nintendo. But loud music in the kitchen is not allowed. In the back there is an impressive installation of monitors. A group of coders locked them selves in to build an enterprise scale of IT in this week. They do not accept interferences of any kind. Still they are proud to show around their prototypes on one of the displays while the others run hundreds of lines of code. Philip runs up to the branding team, he needs a new logo for the homepage. Although it is close to 9 Juli opens her Laptop and starts working.

 

Our Tech-Corner with Philipp, Michael and Valentin discussing the frontend

Our Tech-Corner with Philipp, Michael and Valentin discussing the frontend

At the days final meeting at 9 am most people already grabbed a beer – fuel for the nightshift. In this standup they tell one another what the teams achieved in this day and what they want to work on tomorrow. Most of the students stay in the night to create a truly awesome product.

Laura is part of the Management Team at CDTM. With a background in economics, cultural and political science, she is interested in societal aspects of technology as well as bridging the gap between sustainability issues and tech innovation. She is conducting her research in the field of Entrepreneurship Education at the Max-Planck-Institut for Innovation and Competition.