What If…? MU, an MU student-led conference, will be occurring Saturday, April 11. With the goal of stimulating conversation, collaboration and creative change, 10 ‘questioners’ will be asking “what if…?” in a series of short presentations.
Students at the Trulaske School of Business and the Truman School of Public Affairs at MU have teamed up to create this all-day conference. The What If…? MU conference follows the format created by local entrepreneur Matt Murrie’s What If…? 360 Conference.
The What If…? MU conference will begin at 9 a.m. in Cornell Hall with introductory remarks from Chancellor Bowen Loftin with the first round of “What If…?” questions occurring at 9:30 a.m. Each presentation will last around eight minutes and propose a “what if…?” question. Following every third presentation, longer breakout sessions will occur where attendees can collaborate and try to produce actionable plans to those proposed questions. Each breakout session will have 20 minutes allotted for a “braindump,” followed by 20 minutes of discussion and then 20 minutes for “design.” The focus of the conference is social change and entrepreneurship at MU and in the Columbia community.
“Having the chance to interact with the most forward thinking individuals from all walks of life and all academic disciplines on our campus at What If…? MU will not only spark entrepreneurial solutions in the minds of students and influential community leaders, but will provide them with tools and means by which they can make them happen,” says Seth McCurley, What If…? MU Planning Committee member and Crosby MBA student in the Trulaske College of Business, according to a press release.
Confirmed speakers and their proposed questions include: Dr. Eric Staley, adjunct professor, TSPA and owner of MissionMapping, LLC: “What if we could all be social entrepreneurs?”; Elizabeth Gerrior, MPA 2014, TSPA “What if We Could Recognize the Human Trafficking in our Own Backyards?”; JC Holmes, owner and CEO of EverFin, “What if Money Was a Public Utility?”; Christina Weaver, Mustard Seed, “What if Pencil Production Was Personal?”; Teri Walden, executive director at EnCircle Technology, “What if Cheerios Worked Against You?”; Tron Jordheim, CMO of StorageMart “What if You Could Say the Right Things to the Right People at the Right Time?”; Sarah Redohl, Columbia Business Times and adjunct professor at MU School of Journalism, “What if Mobile Storytelling Could Democratize a Global Narrative?”; Sarah Hill, Chief Storyteller at Veterans United Home Loans, “What if e-commerce…was see-commerce?” and Alex Altomare, Beta Box and Lean Lab, “What if you learned how to code?”
The event is free, but registration is required and limited to 250 attendees. A networking reception will be held after the conference at 5:30 p.m. at the Stotler Lounge on the MU campus.