Launch of USIU-Africa's Design Thinking Center: Cultivating Innovation and Empathy

USIU-Africa is excited to announce that its Design Thinking Center, a hub dedicated to fostering innovation and empathy, will be launched in August 2023. On Thursday, June 22, 2023, the center proposal was inaugurated in the presence of esteemed guests, including Chancellor Dr. Manu Chandaria, Vice-Chancellor Dr. Margee Ensign, and Board of Trustees Chair Dr. Kevit Desai. The proposal event featured inspiring presentations, showcasing the progress made by previous design thinking and social impact innovation winners from last year's program. These presentations underscored the power of design thinking in driving real-world solutions.

The Design Thinking Center at USIU-Africa would be an expansion of the active and ongoing design thinking and social impact innovation program initiated by Ayushi Chandaria, a Stanford graduate. With a vision to transform innovation and business in Africa through design thinking processes, Ayushi has played a pivotal role in shaping the development of the center. Starting with over 500 high school students in 2019, Ayushi has expanded the design thinking program and other design initiatives across Kenya. The program has since been extended to college students and included online programs to increase its reach.

This year's program will be facilitated by a dedicated team that includes Leroy Mwasaru, a Forbes 30 under 30 honoree, who will lead the program's content. The team also includes Dr. Scott Bellows, Vincent Rapando (Chandaria Foundation Representative), Baraka Munene (USIU-Africa Alumnus), and Savannah Kagiri, the first-place winner of the design thinking program in 2022.

The Design Thinking Center at USIU-Africa aims to empower students with a human-centered approach to problem-solving. Through interdisciplinary education, research, and hands-on experiences, students will develop a deep understanding of design principles and methodologies. The center believes in the transformative potential of design thinking and seeks to create a community of empathetic problem solvers. By integrating diverse disciplines and considering social, cultural, and environmental contexts, students will develop innovative solutions to complex challenges.

The launch of the Design Thinking Center later this year would signify a significant milestone in USIU-Africa's commitment to nurturing design leaders who can drive positive change. Building upon the foundation laid by Ayushi Chandaria and the dedicated team, the center is poised to make a lasting impact on innovation and business in Africa. Through creativity, collaboration, and critical thinking, the center inspires students to become agents of innovation and social impact. USIU-Africa invites students, faculty, and the wider community to join this transformative initiative as they collectively shape the future with empathy and ingenuity.

Social Media