We Need You to Build Olin

It should take twice Olin’s population to achieve everything that we manage to accomplish in a year. Somehow, astoundingly, despite our limited size and the vastness of our collective responsibilities, the Olin community manages time and time again to successfully coordinate and run our programs, organizations, think-tanks, and events, all the while continuing to invent, discover, and thrive. Our campus teems with activity and our establishment thrums with diligence, the happy product of our collective vision for a prosperous Olin. Working together, giving of our time, effort, insight, wisdom, enthusiasm, and energy, we keep our College advancing along its exceptional trajectory.

We find the bandwidth to make it work, because it’s important. Somebody has to take on these jobs, and in our little bubble, there is only us. Our staff departments, which are responsible for the same variety of assignments handled by departments at other institutions, are a fraction of the size. Our faculty members stretch the limits of their credit-hours to offer the curriculum that was promised to the students in addition to representing our college to the outside world, conducting new employee searches, and participating in community events. We have to stretch ourselves thin: At Olin, there simply aren’t enough pigeons for each hole.

And yet, we shoulder the exigencies of our institution with élan. If we complain at all, it is to wish that we had more time rather than fewer responsibilities. It is in our nature to take on many roles – to fill the gaps in our agendas and the back-burners of our minds. And thanks to the sum of our combined efforts, Olin College rumbles on.

may2013_builddayIt is with pleasure that I declare that my role of ‘Build Day Architect’ was one of my favorite hats to wear this semester. Though it is a brand new venture this year, Build Day is grounded in the consciousness of our entire community; in the consensus that we wanted to do something demonstrative – something pronounced – to make plain our commitment to the college. Our dedicated team of Architects labored tirelessly to orchestrate the event. A dozen Idea Champions worked with their teams to detail precisely what would need to get done before the day, on the day, and after the day in order to consider their projects successful, and then they did it. Members of our administration have facilitated these endeavors. Numerous members of our community have stepped forward to organize Wildcard projects to boost participation on the day itself. Now that Build Day is almost here, I will spell out the ways in which all members of our community will be able to participate in the event.

I’m talking to you!

First of all: Go! Grab a tee shirt. Stop by the many booths and tables and activities that have been organized to engage you and all other members of our community during Build Day. Check our schedule for more details.

Next: Spend some time with an established team! Their work until now has been to prepare for this day, and now they need volunteers to Build from their semester’s blueprints. They’ve arranged everything. They just need your hands and minds and memories and stomachs.

Finally: Get inspired! See what marvelous things your fellow students, staff, and faculty have done for our College, and consider taking on one of these important roles next semester. You could join the Architect team in making Build Day Two happen, improved on our first! Or you could think about projects you want to see Built, and then get yourself a team. Remember: Somebody has to take on these jobs. For the good of our College, it may as well be you.