How do you bring ideas to life?

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May 24, 2014

Playfulness. Beauty. Nature. I am driven by what I see. As a very visual person, I do a lot of mind-mapping, drawing, and diagramming. It’s been surprising to me to see how many of my students are also visual learners. I operate best through stories that provide cultural and geographic references since I’ve worked with students and families from all over the world. Even in presentations, if I can show a picture rather than talking, I feel I have successfully captured the essence of what I am sharing with an audience.

For example, the majority of colleges in the US accept 66% of students who apply. But at the most selective schools who admit between 5%-6%, how do you present that visually? After the Boston Marathon bombing, the square nearest where they temporarily set up a memorial site was filled with yellow tulips for as far as the eye could see. There in the midst of all that yellow, was a single red tulip. I took a picture and I use that photo to explain to students and families that a great majority of applicants who apply to selective schools have perfect scores, perfect grades, and tons of community service. Yet how does one stand out like that single red tulip in an increasing crowd of applicants? You approach the process differently, that’s how.