The Feminine Urge to Inspire

Design Innovation Fellows workshop showcases women who inspire, demonstrating a community of Golden Flashes bonded by respect

What do refrigerators, fire escapes and windshield wipers all have in common? They were all invented by women.  

Aligned with Women's History Month, The Feminine Urge to Inspire workshop explored the inventions and inspiration of women during the Design Innovation Fellows workshop, which took place on Wednesday, March 13 at Kent State University. This event is one of the many programs that bring together a global community of Golden Flashes bonded by respect.

“We worked on this for a couple months,” said Anna Leitson, Design Innovation Fellow and sophomore integrated mathematics major. “And we want people to take away from the workshop that everyone has their own stories and actually a physical vision board about empowering themselves or other women.”  

Student attendees listened attentively while Leitson and Breanna Lowery, Design Innovation Fellow and senior computer science major, gave a presentation on Women’s History Month and inventions made by women.  

Design Innovation Fellows present The Feminine Urge to Inspire workshop

“I want people to leave feeling like they can do anything they want to no matter what struggles they may have to overcome being a woman," Lowery said. “I want people to be proud of themselves.”

After the presentation, Leitson and Lowery each took half of the room and broke into small groups to then discuss the issues women face today, which women inspired them and how they can support the women in their lives.  

“The idea in my group was, we can help ourselves by not stooping to that level of bringing other people down,” Leitson said. “But by honoring the fact that we're really awesome and being kind to ourselves.”  

Small group discussions at DI Fellows workshop

After the small groups, participants started working on vision boards filled with colorful graphics and photos of future goals, women celebrities, moms and sisters.  

While the vision boards were being made, attendees struck up conversations with one another about their lives and what Women’s History Month means to them.  

“It's a month to celebrate who I am,” Bren Kler, a senior public health major, said. “The closest people in my life have mostly been women, and I think having a month to celebrate that and to think about what it means to be a woman is important.”

attendees work on digital vision boards for Feminine Urge to Inspire DI Fellows workshop

The vision boards served as a way for participants to celebrate those in their lives, build themselves up or dream about their future.  

“I have never had a vision board,” said Pravalika Ramachandrapurapu, an emerging media and technology graduate student. “I recently got into this manifestation, affirmations thing and this really aligns with that.”

After the vision boards were done, participants followed Leiston down the hall to the PrintLab, where she explained how their boards would be printed onto fabric.  

First, the boards were printed onto transfer paper using the sublimation printer, then Leiston taped the transfer onto fabric that was then rolled through a giant heat press. After the heat press, each board was cut individually from the fabric and given to each participant.  

Cutting vision boards apart after printing on fabric

“I definitely hope that anyone who attended this workshop can feel like they have someone they bonded with over you know, empowering females or empowering themselves as a female,” Leitsonsaid.

Learn more about the Design Innovation Student Fellows Program.

POSTED: Monday, March 18, 2024 10:57 AM
Updated: Tuesday, March 19, 2024 09:55 AM
Tanner Poe, Flash Communications
Tanner Poe