At the foundation of Project Playhouse, lessons in applied management
Jack Rotondi ’18 can’t get enough of Project Playhouse. Introduced to the project as a sophomore during his Management 200 service-learning class, Rotondi, now a junior, is mentoring this year’s sophomores through the newly formed Bryant Management Association.
As part of Management 200, sophomores partner with local nonprofit agencies to complete semester-long projects that tap into the concepts learned in class: planning, leading, organizing, and controlling.
Students in Lecturer Christopher Ratcliffe's section work on Project Playhouse in partnership with Wish Kids, a nonprofit whose mission focuses on children with life-threatening illnesses. This semester, Ratcliffe's students organized the logistics of constructing five playhouses to be donated to children served by Wish Kids, and were points of contact for the entire project: pitching the idea to Wish Kids, enlisting high school students in area vocational schools to build the playhouses, and managing logistical aspects of the project from public relations to the delivery of playhouses to campus.
Ratcliffe's course goes beyond asking his students to create and execute a successful event, which this year occurred on April 26 with the presentation of the playhouses to their young occupants. He also asks past students to mentor current students. "There are really a lot of components that go into this project,” says Annie Burdick ’19. “But it’s great to have the guidance of our mentors who know exactly how to allocate tasks and whom to contact for each specific need.”
Rotondi, a Finance and Applied Analytics major, calls working with Project Playhouse “incredible and inspirational.” He adds: “We are making a difference while building a strong blueprint to a project which will help children for years to come."