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The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

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Big iDeas winners present plans

Members+of+a+cultural+West+Dallas+initiative+present+at+the+Big+iDeas+forum+on+Wednesday.
Taylor Henry/The Daily Campus
Members of a cultural West Dallas initiative present at the Big iDeas forum on Wednesday.

Members of a cultural West Dallas initiative present at the Big iDeas forum on Wednesday. (Taylor Henry/The Daily Campus)

In its fourth year of success, Big iDeas at SMU has once again granted funds to undergraduate students with solutions towards the betterment of the Dallas community.

These students presented their “Big iDeas” to a prestigious audience on Wednesday afternoon in the Hughes- Trigg Forum.

The program began with a brief introduction to the Big iDeas project, shortly followed by the presentation of this year’s nine ideas and followed by a celebratory reception in the lower level of Hughes-Trigg.

Through the combination of humor, statistics and visuals, SMU’s undergraduate interdisciplinary Big iDeas recipient teams sophistically conveyed their proposals on how they are currently working, and will continually strive, towards bettering the lives of Dallas locals.

With up to $5,000 in research funds for each team, students can fully implement their ideas to enhance the lives of Dallas residents.

Through an array of innovative, yet practical, objectives on how to better Dallas, students truly epitomized the intellectualism and potential present in SMU students.

Presentations proposed solutions ranging from a performing arts festival attempting to enhance the arts culture of Dallas to strengthening the presence of entrepreneurship and small businesses in the West Dallas community through the issuance of zero interest loans, funded by the sale of affordable Greek merchandise to the SMU Greek community.

All ideas tastefully posed solutions through the combination of exemplary planning, research and the maximization of funds.

Teams have been diligently planning their research proposals for several months and are already starting to see it all come together. One team has even begun rehearsal for its event, which doesn’t occur until the fall.

With a wide variety of majors ranging from biology and chemistry, to the performing arts, recipients accurately reflected the diverse SMU population and strove to convey this eclectic mix in their presentations.

The buzz term “interdisciplinary” seemed to be a common reoccurrence as several projects targeted the lack of diversity in academic exploration in the Dallas community.

The opening presentation which presenters dubbed “Momentum” addressed the lack of well-rounded intellectualism in schools by noting students have developed an “either/or” mentality.

The team noted that today’s students have stereotyped themselves as either the science and math type or the creative and artsy type and have therefore lost the ability to overlap into both fields.

Due to budgeting cuts, schools have reinforced this mentality and the “Momentum” team is fighting to fix this.

Ultimately, these teams seek to better the lifestyles of Dallas residents, and Big iDeas is here to help them do it. 

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