For the past three years, Miami’s World Creativity and Innovation Week (WCIW) organization has built Creativity City on the front lawn of the Farmer School of Business. Last year, each exhibit or “property” was marked by a set of backdrops designed to look like the brick exteriors of campus buildings. Properties featured different student organizations and activities to exercise creative thinking. There was even a pedal wagon making rounds on the streets of campus and Oxford.
“We value creativity in our everyday lives and how it influences us,” said sophomore Jazmin Tangi, an education studies major, entrepreneurship co-major and the events team lead for WCIW. “This is a chance for us as well as our entire community to celebrate together in a variety of different ways on creativity.”
Creativity City is a week-long event celebrating WCIW , which is held annually from April 15 to 21. This year marks the eighth time Miami has celebrated WCIW and the fourth year of Creativity City.
However, in light of classes being moved online and many students leaving Oxford, Tangi and her team had to adapt this year’s Creativity City to be held completely on the web. While it's a big adjustment, it aligns with what WCIW is all about.
“It’s been really cool seeing how our creativity has been put to the test, and the world really has been making innovations of their own with moving what they had planned to online,” said senior Hunter Saturn, a marketing major and WCIW international relations lead.
While the team was still on campus, they began reaching out to various student organizations and Oxford businesses such as Miami University Fashion and Design, Engineers Without Borders and Root Yoga to participate in Creativity City. They are still trying to involve the campus and community as much as possible even if it has to look different than they originally planned.
“We wanted to honor those connections we had started to make and continue this event virtually,” Tangi said. “We’ve gone through different ideas, we’ve had lots of meetings about how we are going to make this work and how we’re going to get our message across clearly.”
The WCIW team is developing a website to serve as Creativity City’s main platform, which will have a newsfeed highlighting student organizations and their activities. They will also connect with people via social media posts.
One activity they have planned is a video by Alpha Rho Chi, Miami’s architecture fraternity, teaching viewers how to build a birdhouse out of household materials. Another is a game design challenge hosted by Miami’s Game Design Club, where participants have 48 hours to design a digital game, which would then be posted on the website for people to play.
Adapting the event has proven to be a challenge, but a welcome one.
“Being part of the entrepreneurship department, we take challenges like this and the ambiguity of our world and we take it as a learning experience and a new way to grow and expand,” Tangi said. “We all were a little shocked when we went remote, but once we gathered ourselves, we said, ‘OK, let’s make this work, let’s figure it out and let’s do it the best that we can.’”
The team is just glad they’re able to bring Creativity City to the Miami community, wherever they may be.
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“It’s very cool to stay connected to the university in that aspect,” said junior Abby Porter, a marketing major with an entrepreneurship co-major and WCIW social media team lead. “A lot of things are being canceled and a lot of clubs and organizations aren’t running, which is disappointing, so it’s nice to see this continue on.”
To keep up with Miami’s WCIW celebration, visit CreativityCity.org.