News

News

Mighty Well, A Year Later

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Just last week Babson College announced its 2017 Babson Entrepreneurial Thought and Action (B.E.T.A) Challenge finalists, which included from the undergraduate school: Womentum (Prabha Dublish ‘18 and Derek Tu ‘18), Vinci (Eagle Wu ‘19) and DetraPel (David Zamarin ‘20, Jacob Heller ‘20, Ali Eldessouky and  Larry Ng ’20). With the recent success of these entrepreneurial finalists, we take a look back at where last year’s BETA finalists currently are, particularly “Mighty Well,” founded by Emily Levy ‘16.

Mighty Well is a growing line of medical accessories that put strength, confidence, and mobility back into the toolkit for those coping with an illness or health setback. These accessories range in products, but what the company excels most in is the PICCPerfect Line Protector, a sleek and fashionable sleeve-like cover to protect insertion sites on the arm from contaminants, and to normalize these insertion sites into everyday settings.

The story behind the founding of Mighty Well traces back to Levy’s sophomore year at Babson College when she was diagnosed with Chronic Neurological Lyme Disease, a disease in which symptoms of lyme disease continue to occur despite use of antibiotics. These symptoms include fatigue, joint/muscle aches, and cognitive dysfunction which requires a PICC line, a long and thin tube inserted into the vein to pump in antibiotics or other medications.

Wildlife on Campus

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The fact that wild animals live in and around the Babson College campus may come as a surprise to many urban-dwellers or international students who aren’t used to four seasons, trees, or forested areas. The Babson College campus is a great edge habitat for raccoons, squirrels, or other snack-hungry wild animals because it is the boundary of two different habitats: the wooded forest of Wellesley and the human development that makes up our school.

According to “Wildlife in the Suburbs” on the Wellesley government website, wild animals are coming “too close to people and begging for food”.  When people feed wild animals, the creatures lose their fear of human interaction and soon expect handouts from everyone they meet. While playing with these adorable animals, people need to be more careful with it in case they cause legal problems unintentionally. In fact, the town of Wellesley imposes a fine of up to $200 for feeding any wildlife.  

In the past, the town of Wellesley has had problems with encounters between household pets and wild animals.  Animals coming from their forested habitat into the edge habitat of suburbia take advantage of food, trash, or small household pets (yikes!) that have been left outside by accident.  Members of the Woodland dorm community, like myself, agree that there is no shortage of skunks and raccoons playing around near the dumpsters by the Woodland parking lot.  When walking past dumpsters (where they like to hang out), they generally run away when approached.

Here are some suggestions to avoid attracting a raccoon into your dorm at night: Secure trash in raccoon-proof containers, which are easily found around campus.  For the most part, the dumpsters have heavy lids that raccoons cannot open.  Given this, don’t leave the lid open.  Near the Woodland dorms of Babson College, behind Trim, and in many more locations, it could be helpful to put ammonia, bleach, or red pepper on the trash bag in the evening to deter animals at night.  Don’t leave snacks or leftovers on the picnic tables or on the barbecue grill.

Overall, this is a great campus filled with wildlife, but it can quickly become overrun by hungry critters if we’re not careful.  We’re lucky to share such a great space with our abundance of wildlife, but we need to be more careful in the way we are treating them.

Class of 2020 Student Senators

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In the end of September, five students were elected as newest leaders in Babson Student Government Association. They were Yoni Bachar, Shiraz Khan Ghauri, Leo Liu, Nori Horvitz, and Kelly Song. SGA are divided into five sections: Academic, Clubs & Org, Campus Improvement, Ways & Means, and Student Life. Senators will need to take the responsibility under their divisions. They frequently hold meetings, talk about issues on campus and endeavor to solve them. This week, I had an interview with one of the new senators Leo Liu, and let us together take a close look at SGA.

I: Why do you want to be a student senator?

Leo: I think this is the best way to be involved in Babson. Being a Babson student, I always feel obligated to contribute to our school. I also worked in the student government back in high school, so I believe with my ability and experience I can bring more positive impact on campus. In terms of personal reasons, I always see myself as a leader, and being a student senator will bring me self-improvement and let me become a better one.

I: What do you do in SGA?

Leo: I am under the division “Ways& Means”. For example, if school organizations and clubs want to apply for funds to hold events, they need to ask our permission. We also take care of budget, distributing money to clubs as funds.  

I: How does SGA and senators work?

Leo: We have weekly meetings. On Wednesday, all senators must gather together and have a meeting for two hours. We will make a report, talk about issues, and discuss about solutions. As for each section, we also have a meeting every week. Being senator make me very busy, but I think it is totally worth it.

I: What is your relationship with other senators?

Leo: We are very close. We vote to pass policies when we have disagreements, which we always do. We often have internal debates regarding to the issues and solutions, but all of us are so willing to contribute to the school and make it better.

I: Do you get to many authorities a lot?

Leo: Yes, we do. We have the chance to talk to President Healey, Dean Lapp and discuss with them about the school. It is a cool experience and I enjoy it very much.

Five senators for the class of 2020 have been elected. They are all responsible, contributing, and always willing to help. Together with other senators, they will try their best to lead Babson into a better school.

PC: Annie Gao
PC: Annie Gao

Town of Wellesley Cracks Down on Food Safety

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On September 30th, the Town of Wellesley Health Department notified Babson College administration that they will be enforcing stricter guidelines on all food events on campus, whether philanthropic or not. This increased regulation jeopardizes much loved campus events such as Chi-Hop and Kappa Con Queso, as well as entrepreneurial food businesses on campus.  

Babson College administration reacted quickly, notifying organizations that have food events planned this year and hired a Food Consultant just days after the notification. The College allowed Delta Sigma Pi’s Bubble Tea with DSP event to proceed as scheduled the day after the notification, believing that it would be unfair to cancel the event with so little notice.

Melissa Beecher, Director of Student Activities and Leadership, explained that “We were not in compliance with Town of Wellesley regulations.” There seemed to be a mutual understanding between the college and town prior to the notice, but the increased enforcement came after several encounters between organizations or businesses and the Town of Wellesley Health Department. Beecher emphasized that “There was no individual triggering event,” and that “It’s nobody’s fault.”

Working with the Town of Wellesley and the newly hired Food Consultant, the college administration started the process to develop a Standard Operating Procedure in which all parties would be satisfied. Beecher emphasized that “Philanthropic, cultural, and faith based food events are such a big part of the core identity of these groups,” and that parties need to work together to develop “guidelines approved by Babson and [The Town of] Wellesley to send to organizations.”  

Looking to the future, Beecher stated that “We won’t be back to what we were,” hinting at big changes to food event policy. “As soon as we know what is going on, we will be reaching out to everyone.”

The organizations of Greek life organize many of the food events on campus. Mindy Freedman, a member of Kappa Kappa Gamma, President of the Panhellenic Council and Co-Chair of the Fraternity and Sorority Leadership Team, stated that “It is upsetting that we aren’t able to hold these events for a while since they bring the community together and are for a good cause … but we are trying to be creative about coming up with new way to raise money,” referring to Kappa Kappa Gamma’s upcoming philanthropic flag football tournament.

Babson administration will be extremely conservative in the coming weeks when planning food events as they develop their guidelines with the Town of Wellesley. Any questions, feedback or concerns can be directed to the Student Activities and Leadership division at sal@babson.edu

Babson’s Community Garden

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From first years to seniors, everyone has been at Babson for a few months now. Students are sure to know campus like the back of their hand—all of the fastest ways to get to classes, when to hit up Dunks to avoid monstrously long lines, and the best places to toss around a football of frisbee. But, what if there was a place you’ve never seen, or even heard of?  

Babson has a goldmine hidden in the back parking lot between Reynolds and Hollister. It has everything you could imagine: golden squash, a multitude of marigolds, and cucumbers, onions, and raspberries galore. Babson’s community garden is a place that represents the diversity, hard work, and nurturing that takes place on every inch of campus.

That being said, the garden is far from perfect and could use a little more love. With the presence of  broken down garden beds, a crumbling mosaic bench, and knee high weeds, the garden is reliant on student support to stay a beautiful green space on campus.

Currently, the garden is being managed by staff and student volunteers. However, the hands doing the heaviest lifting belong to Danielle Krcmar and Marianne Miller, the staff managers of the garden. Students, in particular those in the Sustainability Club, help whenever they can, but gardening is a task that requires lots of dedication, consistency, and love. Imagine how beautiful and full of life the garden would be if each student pulled a weed or watered a flower on their way to Trim, Reynolds, or their appointment at CCD (the Career Center for Development).  

Right now, efforts are focused on readying the garden for planting in the spring. This means weeding, pulling plants that will not survive the winter, and performing simple maintenance on the garden beds. Once spring rolls around, students and helpers will be able to till the soil, add compost, and plant seedlings. Over the summer, the garden will continue to grow big and strong before the fall harvest.

All are welcome to lend a helping hand at the garden. Tools are provided. Just bring your hands! If you are interested in helping us nurture the garden regularly–or just for an afternoon–please reach out to the Lisa Cole at SustainabilityClub@babson.edu.

Written By: Lisa Cole & Brenna Leary

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Administration Response to Increased Student Body

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One effect of welcoming the biggest class size in Babson’s history is stretched resources, and administration is working with the community to help alleviate the congestion.

45 minutes of last week’s Student Government Association (SGA) meeting was dedicated to identifying impacts of increasing student population. Dean Ward asked for feedback from the senators and students:

  1. What observations do students have related to more students being on campus?
  2. What impact (positive, negative, or otherwise) do larger numbers of students at Babson have on the student experience?
  3. What areas have been impacted the most? Academic? Dining, Housing, Etc?
  4. What changes, recommendations, or guidance do students have for me as Vice President of Student Affairs (VPSA)/Dean Of Students (DOS)?

Common concerns are: the lack of study spaces and housing, long queues at meal times, classes and registration availability, and decrease parking spaces.

In response to lack of study spaces, Dean Lapp sent out an email with additional reserved study spaces in Gerber and Reynolds earlier this week. A suggestion to decrease Reynolds and Trim congestion is to offer optional meal plans to students living with kitchens in their dorm rooms (such as suites and doubles in Putney and Bryant). Dean Ward is working on updating the Registration system and identifying more solutions.

In addition, many students also expressed positive impacts of an increasing student body; more First Year students are using campus resources like the Writing Center, Center for Career Development, and other administrative offices.

While more students may mean more financial resources, these financial resources need to be effectively allocated; and sometimes, more money does not equal to more space. We all need to work together as a community to find solutions to this positive change at Babson.

If you have any ideas or feedback about this issue or any other issue, please voice your thoughts through your class senator or come to a SGA meeting on Wednesdays from 6:30pm to 8:30pm in Trim 201/202; everyone is welcomed!

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Tips to finding your own study space on campus:

  • Spend an hour to walk around every building on campus; explore every nook to find a comfortable space that works for you because everyone has different requirements. Even in the library, I have specific spots that make me more productive than others.
  • Don’t forget classroom buildings like Olin Hall, Luksic, Tomasso, etc.
  • Ask upperclassmen for their favorite study spaces
  • Use Babson’s EMS System to book rooms ahead of time. You can book classrooms and conference rooms too!

Additional Study Spaces:

  • Olin Hall classrooms and common areas
  • Tomasso third floor exists a nice conference room (if it’s not being used)
  • Luksic hallway that leads into Blank Center
  • Blank Center first floor
  • Babson Hall also has a big, nice conference room that is usually free
  • Hollister lobby area has a great table and study space
  • Reynolds, Horn, Trim (obviously)
  • Your favorite classroom (or any classroom if it’s not being used)
  • Sorenson second floor
  • Glavin Chapel (when it’s not being used)
  • Any residence hall’s common room
  • West Hall’s innovation center, study rooms, and tall tables

Babson Senior Launches New Mobile App

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Babson senior Hugo Finklestien launched a mobile student market place this September; right around when most of us were struggling to move into new dorms or new apartments.  Finklestien learned about the struggles of moving apartments early in his college career. As a sophomore, when he moved into a new apartment in Brookline, he realized that the problem of moving wasn’t so much a moving problem but more of a student problem. His moving experience – trading old text books, buying “new-used” fridges – proved that students were both lazy and broke, and that there were few tools in the market that address the needs of students specifically. Finklestien was aware of options like ‘Babson Free and For Sale’, but thought that there was room for improvement.  Finklestien said, “The business idea started early that semester, while I was hanging out on my porch”.  He and his roommate started working on ‘Olѐ’, their would-be student market place, but the trials of college life distracted the two from staying on task, until the spring of Hugo’s junior year.

That spring, Finklestien traveled to San Francisco, with Babson’s study-away program, and focused all of his attention on reformulating the idea and refocusing his effort. During his semester in San Francisco, Finklestien worked with classmates to research the market, re-design the user interface, and practice his pitch to venture capitalists. While away, Olѐ also hired a new CTO.  Finklestien credits the program for keeping him motivated and highly recommends San Francisco study-away to any aspiring business owners.

A few months later, a summer’s worth of working and forgoing internship opportunities, and two versions under his belt, Olѐ is in its second version of the application, which is available to students with a Babson, Boston Unversity, or Northeastern email.

A college email is required for membership, because Olѐ’s goal is to solve some of the struggles associated with earning and saving money as a student. Hugo decided that a digital market place, where students can transact with each other, would be the best solution. That’s why Olѐ takes no commission from either buyers or sellers who transact on the app.

The app is fairly simple to use, so if you’re in the market for anything from a used fridge to tutoring services, all you have to do is download ‘Olѐ! Student Marketplace’ from the app store, search for the product or service you want, or create a news feed post that describes what you’re looking for. The process is just as easy for a seller. If you want to get rid of some old textbooks or make extra cash cat-sitting, post a picture of your product, list a price, and wait for a buyer to make an offer.capture

Biggest class size in Babson’s history

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In the history of Babson College, the first-year class of 2020 is undoubtedly the biggest cohort that matriculated, with the numbers showing that at 588 students, about 60 more students chose to enroll this year as compared to the previous year.

The acceptance rate, which dropped from 28% to 26% last year, currently stands at 25%–the lowest it has ever been thus affirming that the admissions process has become even more selective. In addition, the yield rate which traditionally stands at 27-28% was higher this year, which means that although the admitted students are academically more competitive and are likely to have other choices among top notch schools, a greater number of the first-years chose to complete their undergraduate degree at Babson.

It is thus upon the Office of Undergraduate Admissions Office to adjust the algorithm used to determine selection and yielding of students because as the Dean of the Undergraduate School, Ian Lapp confirms, “The population growth seen this academic year was unintentional and will not be the class size for future incoming cohorts.”

This year’s large intake does reflect a growing level of interest in Babson and its commitment towards promoting entrepreneurship of all kinds, however, the size of the campus cannot fully support additional students. The population increase has had an impact on the availability of adequate housing on campus with the effect being that several transfer students lacked on-campus housing this year while several rooms in residential houses were subdivided to accommodate more students.

Similarly, despite the warm reception of the new dining services from Chartwells, there has been the tendency of long queues forming during peak hours of the day at both Trim and Reynolds. There has also been limited opportunity to adjust class schedules or take some of the required courses, which prompted the Registrar’s Office to add more sections to certain courses in order to accommodate the increasing numbers. Finding parking spaces in the designated campus areas has become an even greater struggle with students commenting that “I’m trying to find parking or I had to park far away” is currently a valid excuse for being a few minutes late to class.

Nonetheless, Dean Lapp states that there are currently no expansion plans underway for the campus but rather that the school is keen on pursuing alternative means of adjusting to the increased population. As he emphasizes, “This is no crisis just community, with the additional students adding to the intellectual enrichment of the campus.”

Dynamic Business Relations; FME Then vs. Now

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“The only way to understand what it takes to run a business is to actually run a business,” according to the Babson website. The Babson undergraduate curriculum has been made internationally famous in part through its brilliant Foundations of Management and Entrepreneurship class (FME).

The method of how FME is taught has largely remained consistent through the years. However, there have been adaptations to the curriculum to address a deeper global impact while indulging in the opportunity to use state-of-theart technological innovation on all fronts.

William Bermant, a senior and CEO of his FME business three years ago, has made the choice to give back to the freshman class by becoming a peer mentor with a global mindset. Students of the past FME classes generally understood that peer mentors tell you what to do or just help you study, but really they guide you through the entire process with a holistic perspective. This includes understanding the overall value of a team, helping with business relationships, dealing with supply-side conflicts, leading exam study sessions, helping with presentation practice for the rocket pitches, and of course, providing constructive feedback with real examples for personal improvement.

FME mentors are extremely insightful to first-year students, but to the mentors, there is a greater significance that encompasses what it means to give back. By giving their time to help current FME students, peer mentors like William exemplify a real-life example of coming full circle with the FME business cycle flow that first-year students are being tested on.

William says, “It’s great to communicate with each section of the team,” which is helpful in experiencing the whole FME process with a more holistic view and expanded perspective.

Much of the current FME curriculum involves working within a small group of people doing such a specialized task that sometimes it is possible to lose sight of the overall big picture goals of the company. Facilitating an open communication between all members of the group ensures everyone gets a holistic understanding of the company’s global and/or local impacts; it is one of the most significant components of the FME class.

Sarah Dilworth, a current junior who worked with the HR department for her FME company as a first-year, has interesting insights on some aspects of the FME curriculum then versus now. She wants the experience to be “more holistic.”

The HR department does a decent job with individual performance appraisals, but sometimes the feedback isn’t “being used,” says Sarah. Sarah also suggests that “getting an overview of what the jobs are before getting assigned,” would be a helpful improvement to the class. Nonetheless, she liked her FME business’ operations department so much that she chose to concentrate in operations as her personal college focus, fulfilling her own personal holistic FME experience.

The business world is a dynamic place and this year’s FME class is ready to lead these global changes. “Obviously, businesses are designed to make profit, but now we’re looking at how to solve global problems as well,” states current FME class professor David Lopez. He introduces, “There’s now an additional focus on service-related businesses. It’s relatively easy to resell a shirt or a mug, and those common FME retail businesses are great for teaching everything we need in terms of experience, but we’re also trying to focus on the service aspect, like providing consulting services. Despite the fact that these services require more research and sometimes are hard to quantify, we’re trying to encourage these businesses too.” Professor Lopez sees that the desires of the current students are changing over time from mostly past retail-based FME startup companies to current companies selling unique services rather than retail products.

In these respects, FME is more dynamic than many other classes offered elsewhere; consumer mindsets evolve over time and this signature class aims to stay ahead of the curve.

Babson’s first food entrepreneurship class

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A seafood empire owner,restaurant investor, major food distributorand bicycle-fueled food delivery enthusiast sit together on the third floor of Tomasso building. No,this is not the start of a bad joke.This is Friday afternoon at Babson.

One of the eventful Fridays in which Rachel Greenberger, Director of Food Sol–a food industry action tank part of The Lewis Institute–teaches her class on Food Entrepreneurship; the very first class of this subject within Babson’s undergraduate and graduate academic history.

The class took place over three days, September 8th, 9th and 16th, of which certain hours of the class were open to auditors and undergraduate students.

The graduate students were also broken up into similar groups, divvied up among the classroom into sections pertaining to their interest. This proved helpful in creating a representation of the New England food industry itself, of many tight-knit small communities that are separate yet constantly intersecting with one another to share perspective, and of course, the love of food.

And Babson sure loves food. It seemed only fitting that the last day of the Food Entrepreneurship class coincided with the kickoff of Babson’s Alumni Weekend, with a few alumni themselves featuring on the panels, including:
●Ian So (B‘08) Co-Owner & Co-Founder of Chicken & Rice Guys, a food truck, catering and restaurant business that also focuses on giving back to the community.
●Nadia Liu Spellman (B‘04) Owner of Dumpling Daughter, a fast-casual restaurant serving both traditional and trendy Asian dishes in Weston, MA.
●Rob Dalton (M‘14) Co-Founder of 88 Acres, a line of healthy, non-GMO, gluten free, nut free, snacks and granola bars.
●Dana Masterpolo (M’01) Co-Founder & Head Storyteller of Bantam Cider, a modern craft cider made right in Somerville from freshpressed apples.

Shea Anthony (B‘18) attended one of the panel sessions that focused on retailers within the food industry. She said, “I am constantly, and pleasantly, surprised by the amount of resources Babson College offers, and the many career fields and industries it is connected
to. I think people often forget that Babson is not just for the startup, finance, and accounting people but also the fashion, technology, design,
media–and as we can see today–food people as well.”

For those who consider themselves to be possible “food people” or are still perhaps figuring it out, Greenberger encourages them to access those untapped Babson resources and attend Food Sol’s Community Table every Tuesday from 1 – 2 pm in the Blank Center. Food entrepreneurs are invited to speak and discuss what’s going on in today’s food industry with other graduate and undergraduate students, and more often than not, one leaves with not only new pieces of knowledge, but also a solid Boston restaurant recommendation.