SAYA Youth in College Learn about Design Thinking at IBM

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By Tam, Second Year College Student

January 12th, 2018 was a rainy day. It was also the day of our trip to the headquarters of IBM in Astor Place. We walked through the downpour excited to see what it is like inside the workspace of a Fortune 500 company. We were not disappointed. I was personally in awe with the check-in gate where I had to dip in either an ID or a guest pass. It was in this moment that it finally clicked in my head: Wow, I am really inside a multi-billion dollar company.

We toured the office which was modern, sleek and well-designed. The space was intentionally open to encourage teamwork and communication and to inspire a friendly and collaborative work culture. As the tour went on, we were informed about the day-to-day activities of an employee at IBM, what kind of projects and challenges they tackle and what each of our tour guides like best about the company. We then participated in a Q&A panel with IBM staff and I felt that I learned a lot from them. Afterwards, we participated in an inspiring brainstorming workshop that focused on design thinking. I liked this activity particularly because it tackled creativity and mental blocks, things relevant to a college student. I am thankful to SAYA for providing me and my peers the opportunity to visit a company such as IBM, as well as the myriad of other opportunities and resources it provides to youths of all ages.