Life Design

2020 Life Design Summer Institute Series: An Overview

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Many students saw their summer plans upended. Part of our response was the creation of the 2020 Life Design Summer Institute. This post provides an overview of the 2020 Life Design Summer Institute, as well as a running list of my weekly reflection posts.

What is the 2020 Life Design Summer Institute?

The 2020 Life Design Summer Institute is an 8-week non-credited course put on by Life Design Educators at the Johns Hopkins University’s Life Design Lab @Homewood. It’s part of the Summer Experience Stimulus Plan, which provides students with funded or free options in which to redesign their summer. The course aims to train students in life design concepts and design thinking principles so that they can imagine and explore their future professional options.

Who created the 2020 Life Design Summer Institute?

The 2020 Life Design Summer Institute was co-created by multiple Life Design Educators. Justin Lorts catalyzed the call for creating a prototype life design curriculum. He initially brought in Michael Gonzales, Patrick Brugh, and I to ideate on a curriculum that would be implemented the following year. With COVID-19, there was an urgency to do something immediately and Matthew Golden joined us to help make that happen.

Initially, the 5 us were planning to co-teach the sections of the Institute; however, we were pleasantly surprised that we had 5 times the amount of interested applicants than we intended. In order to accommodate as many students as possible, we recruited Lauren Barrett and Hope Burke as instructors (and additional Life Design Educators as teaching assistants).

The 2020 Life Design Summer Institute is truly a co-created effort. From the syllabus to the sections, individual Life Design Educators have infused their experiences and perspectives to create a unique curriculum for our students.

How Can I Learn More About the 2020 Life Design Summer Institute?

There are 3 ways that you can learn more about the 2020 Life Design Summer Institute:

1. Life Design Log’s 2020 Life Design Summer Institute Series

Over the course of the 2020 Life Design Summer Institute, I will blog weekly about my section. Each post will recap the general aims of the lesson, as well as my 3 takeaways.

Here is a list of all the posts:

2. Twitter

My fellow Life Design Educators are actively sharing and discussing our experiences with the 2020 Life Design Summer Insitute on Twitter using the hashtag #LDSI2020. Feel free to follow along!

Here is a sample of what we have shared:


Closing Thoughts

The co-creation and implementation of the 2020 Summer Life Design Institute is one of the projects that I am most proud of so far as a Life Design Educator. I’m looking forward to teaching my section and iterating on our curriculum.

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