This project was an independent study that involved semester-long research before coming to a final pitch. The research question stemmed from the evaluation of how college students in high-stressed environments react to the idea of future planning.
Through different methods of research (surveys, interviews, make-tool activities) I found that college students in high-stress environments have a misconception of what life after school will be like. I took this opportunity to pin point how these students approached the idea of future planning, how far they were willing to looking, and what experiences shaped the way they chose to plan.
The result of that research is that college students don't know what to think about when it comes to future planning. They aren't sure what makes them happy, why they make the decisions they do, and what shapes their long-term happiness instead of just their short-term satisfaction. I decided to propose creating small coffee-table activity cards to help college students begin to contemplate and discuss those bigger questions in an easy-going environment.
The most interesting part about conducting this research was seeing how people perceived themselves. It was a compelling entryway into how people think about how their actions affect themselves and how they feel the presence of others affect them. Whenever I asked the interviewee to analyze why they plan the way they do, they immediately begin to tell a story about a transitionary part of their life (whether it's a parental relationship, High School woes etc.). I felt that people often surprised themselves when they couldn't answer a question or didn't have an answer prepared. What I found was that when life seemed too busy, or being in the moment was too overwhelming young adults needed a little push to ask themselves bigger introspective questions to help them realistically think about what they seek in the future and whether or not that would make them happy.