Meet the Innovation Hub Team!

Headshot of smiling woman with red hair in grey topBy Julia Smeed, Innovation Hub Project Lead

A year ago I would have never imagined that I’d be taking on the Innovation Hub project.  I feel that leading the Innovation Hub is the best job at U of T!  I love to see how people from diverse backgrounds and with a wide range of life experiences can come together to create change.  To me, the spirit of innovation is really in the collaboration and creativity of talented people coming together and each contributing in a unique way.  We are living in an age where technology and ideas are moving faster than we can and it is so hard to keep up with the innovation and disruption that exists all around us.  Yet one thing that technology can never replace is that creative spark that happens when like minded people come together with a common purpose.

Today, it’s my pleasure to introduce you to the Innovation Hub team.  This incredible group of students, staff and community members have united around our common purpose to design the University of Toronto student experience of the future.  It’s our job to explore, discover and deeply understand the ‘what-is’ of the current student experience so that we can, together with our brilliant U of T community, design possibilities for the future.  What might this look like?  We don’t know yet.  This is a different approach to student program and service design.  It is an approach where we will seek to gain a deep understanding of the needs of our students through conversations, observation and empathy building experiences.  We imagine that we will find some opportunity for sustaining innovation (adjusting what we are already doing to deepen the impact) and transformational innovation (which may disrupt the status-quo in some areas, in a good way).

So please join me in welcoming our Innovation Hub team!  Each team is co-led by a current student and a staff member and consists of both students and staff members on the team.  The Innovation Hub is truly a joint effort in our community.

If you’re feeling inspired and would like to learn more about the Innovation Hub project, please contact us.  We’d love to hear from you!


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