The MIRROR (Movement to Invest in Reciprocity & Re-imagine Outreach Relationships), which was conceived and launched at Olin College of Engineering, presents an alternative to traditional community outreach.
MIRROR programs are co-developed with community partners and range from STEM Slam spoken-word events to designing neighborhood spaces to youth-led summer enrichment programs, all with the goal of strengthening relationships between colleges, companies, and marginalized communities. Each MIRROR program is designed like a potluck dinner, where each participant contributes to the overall experience—and no-one is left on the sidelines. This leads to more impactful experiences and cross-community relationships.
The MIRROR partners with community-based organizations and companies to create opportunities in three strategic areas.
All MIRROR experiments align with and support at least one of three strategic areas:
- Connecting communities through spaces and events;
- Co-designing youth-serving community programs; and
- Coaching companies toward cultural change.
The MIRROR models ways that colleges, companies, and community-based organizations can complement each other by co-designing events and programming that lead to lasting positive impacts on STEM fields and citizens from all backgrounds. As we continue to prototype programs and events, we look for ways to measure impact with an evolving set of non-traditional metrics.
PROGRAMS CREATED BY OR CONNECTED TO THE MIRROR
Co-Designed Youth Programs
A youth-led teen program reimagining, designing and deploying out-of-school time events across Cambridge with a STEAM focus. MIRROR connected individuals support STEAM activities and develop Recess teens through workshops.Read More
IN DEVELOPMENT: Olin College students created the MIX (Multicultural Innovators Experience) program in 2019, The MIX promotes diversity and community inclusiveness while also providing professional development and resources.
To extend the reach of this important program, the MIRROR team will work to secure space off-campus where professional groups serving students of color (e.g., NSBE and SHPE chapters) can come together.
Boston has no Historically Black Colleges of Universities (HBCUs), therefore, we seek to pilot pop-up HBCU events (outside the walls of their predominantly white institutions) to cultivate the high expectation + high support ecosystem at the core of HBCU campuses.
Cultural Change at Companies
IN DEVELOPMENT: MIRROR members are currently planting seeds for companies to host INVESTernships in the future: summer experiences that build in time to advance work for employers while supporting interns contributing to local community-based organization programming as part of their weekly work.
Companies partnering with people and organizations at the core of the MIRROR experience circle-centered techniques for multiple scales and purposes. We explain our techniques as we demonstrate them through meetings that invite participants to and from the room in less-traditional yet powerful ways. Our team helps bring new voices to the table and amplify existing voices within companies equitably.
See the people involved with The MIRROR
- Kyrk Morris, Citizens of the World, MIRROR Community Engagement Coordinator
- HBCU Champion
- Jeff Goldenson, Buildingways, MIRROR Public Space Project Coordinator
- Videography Champion
- Wynter Duncanson, MathWorks, MIRROR Workforce Development Coordinator
- MATLAB Champion
- Topper Carew, Fundraising and Constant Coaching
- New Chapter Construction, Building support
- Jerry Goss '23, Olin College EASE Lab Student
- INVESTERNship Pilot Lead
Every Lead and Coordinator above played key roles and worked alongside the following key volunteers
- Speaker support coaches
- Gillian Epstein - Olin College Writing Initiative Specialist and Sr Lecturer
- Jon Adler - Olin College Professor of Psychology
- Topper Carew - Art, Culture, and Technology Expert + Film maker
- Art Installation support
- Emily Wan - Olin College alumna
- Marion Mandanguit - Olin College alumna
- Venue and community support
- Nikoi Coley-Ribeiro and the Cambridge Foundry Staff
- Mika Gazit - Olin College student
- David Shuman - Olin College Professor of Data Science and Applied Mathematics
- Equity Roadmap
- Innovators for Purpose
- Interactive Intermission hands-on experience support
- Math Talk
- The Clubhouse Network
- Valkyrie Battlebot Team
- Mighty Picnic + PBS Kids
- Pauline Petersen Drone Photography
- Shade is Social Justice
Sponsors and Key Partners
Co-founding Community Partner and Movement Co-lead: Citizens of the World
A Cambridge-based 501(c)3 that helps shape and carry out the initiatives of the MIRROR. Citizens of the World and Olin College of Engineering worked with Buildingways to establish early ideas of the MIRROR and bring them into the world.
Other groups who have contributed funding or in-kind donations to make our initiatives possible: