By: Hana Priscu ~Feature Editor~
Many upperclassmen opt to move into the neighborhoods that surround Xavier after the constraint of living on campus for one or two years. Students tend to settle in the streets of Norwood, sharing the neighborhood with families and other local residents. However, the interaction between them has been bumpy over the years.
As an active resident of Norwood and the Director of Woven Oak Initiatives, a program intent on creating community connections among the residents of Norwood, Angela Pancella has extensive knowledge and experience when it comes to this relationship. While many Xavier students may call Norwood home, Pancella points out that they still may not know much about the city.
“Many people don’t know that Rookwood Commons is actually in Norwood,” Pancella said. An improved knowledge of the city may lead to more students making use of all it has to offer. Having lived in Norwood for ten years, Pancella’s knowledge of Norwood is supported by years of firsthand experience. “I’m sure that more students frequenting Norwood establishments would be well-received,” Pancella said.
By patronizing more local businesses, students can support the community and contribute to the city that they call home. Among Pancella’s favorite features of Norwood is its walkability, which makes it simple for Xavier students to explore and utilize its businesses.
“Norwood offers businesses that are closeby and interesting. Not the typical cookie-cutter stores,” Pancella said.
Among these unique businesses are Haines House of Cards, a local magic shop, and Moriah Pie, a paywhat- you-can pizza shop. See the sidebar for a complete list of Norwood businesses recommended by Pancella.
By: Erica Lampert ~Staff Writer~
A few years ago, Dr. Tom Merrill, the director of the School of Arts and Innovation, attended a Design Thinking Bootcamp at Stanford University where principal designer for GE Healthcare Doug Dietz transformed healthcare for children and their families by improving on the MRI machine he had created himself.
“I remember telling him that this was the hospital’s problem and not his when we were talking about it,” Merrill said. “He said it was his machine that caused the fear, and he should be willing to fix it.”
After several meetings with doctors, nurses, patients and families, Dietz had finally come up with a solution by changing the direction of the MRI bolts. This change was minimal, but it allowed hospitals to save money on sedatives for scared patients while creating pirate ships and spaceships out of one of the world’s scariest machines.
“Doug managed to change how the patients experienced the MRI. He was able to get a young boy with cancer to say ‘Mom, can I please do it again?’ and leave her with a bright moment in her day,” Merrill said.
Dietz’ work has inspired Dr. Merrill to apply this type of learning for his own students. His new Design Thinking class allows students to get an innovation minor with the College of Business and pursue this new way of learning and thinking.
“This will be my second time teaching this class,” Merrill said. “Last semester was focused on startup programs, now we are trying to improve Xavier’s relations with Norwood.”
Xavier has been able to create relationships with Evanston and Avondale, but the relationship with Norwood is still minimal.
“We really want to reach out to Norwood through interactions and understanding,” Merrill said. “Right now, our only relationship with them is to direct traffic from Cintas during basketball games away from them.”
Tools like Batterii, a data storage program used by companies like Adidas and Coca Cola, will help the class in their efforts.
“Once the class learns how to input their data into Batterii, we will start brainstorming ideas to share with the community from the interviews we will do asking community members how we can help them,” Merrill said. “If they look at us like we are crazy then we will go back to the drawing board. As I’ve told my students several times, this is not a linear process. There’s going to be a lot of going back and forth.”
Ideas will hopefully be finished by the end of spring break and they will be able to pitch their ideas during finals week.
“My goal is to get the students to get their hands dirty, boots on the ground and learn by doing instead of lecturing. I also hope to complete our Design Thinking Challenge and build these better relationships with Norwood,” Merrill said. “Stay tuned Xavier.”