How much entrepreneurial wisdom can you soak up in a day? The Changemaker Central Innovation Festival at Arizona State University (ASU) aimed to find out. This one-day workshop, a brainchild of marketing and psychology major Ariyal Jain, was a whirlwind of hands-on learning and lectures designed to empower students to dive into the entrepreneurial world.
Changemaker Central is an ASU initiative that equips students with the tools, resources, and funding to bring their innovative ideas to life. The Innovation Festival, held at ASU’s Tempe campus, was a hotbed of creativity, with workshops and lectures on a range of topics, from AI and consumer psychology to diversity, sustainability, and digital marketing.
Aaryan Arora, a third-year business data analytics student, said, “This event helps support innovation in students. It provides an opportunity to bring like-minded thinkers together for the promotion of entrepreneurship.”
In a similar vein, ASU is also harnessing the power of the Internet of Things (IoT) to create a “smart campus.” Ming Zhao, an associate professor of computer science, received a $500,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to integrate data collection and computing applications into the blue emergency call boxes across ASU’s Tempe campus.
This initiative, known as the BLUE project, aims to improve how people navigate their environment and bring innovation to preexisting infrastructure.
Zhao and his team plan to use the BLUE project to help sustain the growing scale of computing, networking, and storage resources at ASU. The devices will initially collect and process data about environmental conditions and pedestrian traffic, enabling members of the ASU community to find the safest travel routes on campus.
Zhao believes that the true innovation of BLUE is the scale of data processing and learning. He said, “ASU is a leading institution in smart campus development, and the rich and safe campus experiences that it brings will help attract great talent and investments to ASU.”
The BLUE project is just one example of how ASU is fostering a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship among its students. Whether it’s through the Changemaker Central Innovation Festival or the BLUE project, ASU is empowering its students to think big, innovate, and make a difference in the world.