One clause of Olin's Honor Code is entitled "Do Something", and states the following:
"I will strive to better myself and my community and take responsibility for my own behavior. When I become aware of a violation of the Honor Code or an issue within the community, I will take action towards resolution of the situation. I expect others to do the same"
While this clause can be interpreted to focus on issues and violations of the Honor Code, to take action to resolve problems that arise, I have found an alternate meaning in the Honor Code's "Do Something" clause. If I have something that I want to do; a change I wish to make, a place I want to go, or an idea I want to solidify, then it is my responsibility to make that happen. The Do Something clause has taught me how to empower creativity and change.
Students may sometimes get lost in their work and forget what it feels like to take a moment and relax, reflect, or do something silly. When those moments do happen, amazing ideas occur. Those moments, when minimal thought is given to the work you actually have to finish, create beautiful things. A few nights ago, a few Olin students decided that they should go arrange some leaves out in the "O" in the middle of the night. What they ended up creating shows just how amazing people can be when they have an interesting idea that they want to pursue, and it brought smiles to the face of everyone who noticed.
Last weekend, I fractured my hand. How did I do this, you may ask? Well, another student and I had an idea that we wanted to come true. We wanted to operate giant robots. A few months ago, Olin alumnus and past professor Gui Cavalcanti helped create MegaBots, a Kickstarter campaign with a grand plan to bring giant robot combat into reality. The MegaBots team recently offered a challenge: whoever could make the most convincing video about why they wanted to be a MegaBots pilot could win a chance to pilot a MegaBot. This challenge prompted me to drop what I was doing and think: why not make a super awesome video about why I want to drive giant robots? Yea, sure, I tripped and fractured my hand in the process. But being part of something creative and amazing is worth the trip (pun intended). Here was the end result:
Having the time and the mental energy to spend on doing what you love is incredibly satisfying and rewarding. Not only do you get to have fun and goof off, but also you get to have fun and take on some pretty daunting challenges not because you have to, because they are for school or work or research, but because you think that no matter how much time it will take, you know it will be pretty cool. So I challenge all those reading this: over Thanksgiving break, explore your creativity. Delve into your passions. Do something awesome.
Alex Crease, c/o 2016