I hope, gentle reader, that after such a long absence, you will find it in yourself to think me not too remiss for my undiligence. Allow me, if you will, a moment's update on the goings on of the past few months that have taken me mindfully away from things Olin. I assure you that, passing now back into a state of returning, thoughts of school, courses, beginnings, reunions and fresh meetings, I have returned to that which I had forgotten, my life at Olin and this blog, its journal. So please, step back in with me with summer eyes at the many busy doings of a summer in Somerville, and we will together make ready a renewed dialogue twixt me, word-smitten writer, and you, a friend ushered welcoming back home.
Topics for discussion: Foundry summer E!, Boston summer living, New England summer concert binge, quite a fall to come.
My employer for this summer has been myself. As mentioned in The Foundry Isn't for Forging Steel, I have been involved with an entrepreneurial undertaking in the clean energy realm. This summer, I took advantage of the Foundry's summer E! program and continued to work on the project through the summer months. This means that I maintain a sweet office in the Foundry, and have prime facilities at which to research, study, scheme, prep, pitch, and generally explore the direction of a concept. I've had the opportunity to pitch to panels of business professionals, discuss business logistics with corporate lawyers, chat with franchise owners and managers, and implement a research project with Olin faculty. Starting to meet key players in the Boston clean energy industry has been one of the most fascinating parts of this experience. There are a lot of very smart, very driven people looking hard at the twin opportunity and dilemma of the need for clean energy, and these minds form across government, industry, and business are trying to make Boston a hotbed for clean technology innovation. More on this strengthening surge of clean tech E! another time.
My presence at the Foundry also means being a part of the community there, as several of the businesses have members dedicating their summers to pushing forward on their projects. We give each other weekly updates on our progress, in order to share ideas and give advice based on our own experiences. Advisers also make appearances at this weekly meeting to give expert opinions on our doings. The teams at work this summer include- Xobl, the Automated Tuberculosis Diagnostic, Bluestem Energy, an exciting home coffee roasting accessory, Recipe Tango, Idea Tree Design. I am also vaguely aware that the efforts of Sonicfoam continue, although that company does not work with us here in Needham. We've even done some improvements on our physical space, which will continue to grow with the program. See below for my contribution.
Fresh carpentry in the new public design space for student businesses @ the Foundry. Automated TB Diagnostic team manager Jessie Lin not included. Note the "Soft focus" for artistic effect.
Besides the Foundry goings on, it has been well worth the effort to live off campus for the summer. As idyllic as the Ivory Tower of Olin is, having a separate living space in the bustle and variety of the neighborhood of Tufts University has been excellent. It really takes genuine on-foot exploration to get a feel for a city, and living within walking distance of the T (here in Davis Square) is a big difference from living within driving distance of the T (at Olin).
I've also taken full liberty to spend all the money I'm not earning at the Foundry to buy concert tickets. From NYC to the Fenway neighborhood to Portland, Maine, I have found myself in striking distance of many a good show. Dispatch: Zimbabwe (slamming reunion for charity), Less Than Jake and Reel Big Fish (killer ska ruckus from 2 of the masters [MASTERS!] of the art), The Cat Empire (best dancing time at a live show a kid could have), and State Radio (another solid reggae rock jam fest.) Perhaps later I'll wax artistic in full music critic style about these shows. Do the readers feel this to be Olin relevant?
As my mind starts to turn back to the homelike halls of shimmering Olin, my anticipation grows at all the fresh life and activity to come. A fresh suite of friends, a full complement of new courses, and a host of other goings on... it promises to be quite the fall. I promise more before I see you there -