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the Wond'ry E-Newsletter [Vanderbilt University]

August 2020

Fall 2020 at the Wond’ry

In accordance with Vanderbilt’s Return to Campus plan, the Wond’ry will incorporate new policies and procedures for the coming semester in order to ensure that students, faculty, and staff are safely able to continue innovating, making, and putting their ideas into motion.

Many of the Wond’ry’s resources and programs will be provided via alternative online options this semester, but one unique in-person feature the Wond’ry provides is makerspace resources to the entire Vanderbilt community.  This semester, we will continue providing making resources for Vanderbilt students, faculty, and staff by incorporating appropriate physical distancing and enhanced cleanliness procedures.

In order to accommodate the space usage required by physical distancing, in the coming semester, the Wond’ry will no longer be available as a general study, meeting, and hangout space.  Additionally, the Wond’ry will be closed to non-scheduled guests or drop-in visits.  Wond’ry Staff will continue to hold online office hours, with information on times and availability listed on the Wond’ry website’s Team page.

Makerspaces at Wond’ry will be open for the fall semester beginning August 31, 2020 and will close November 20, 2020.  In order to use the Wond’ry’s making resources, individuals must reserve time slots using the Wond’ry’s new Innovation Portal, accessible at thewondry.com.  Twenty individual, physically-distanced maker stations will be equipped with a variety of tools and free materials and will be available Monday through Friday between 12:00pm and 6:00pm.  Maker stations may be reserved in 50-minute increments on a first-come, first-serve basis.  Stations will be provided with sanitation materials so that individuals may clean stations before and after usage.

(Pictured above: The Wond’ry Innovation Portal reservation system)

Please note that due to safety concerns with shared headsets, VR resources in the Wond’ry’s Emerging Tech Lab will not be available this semester.  For certain other making resources, such as 3D printing and laser cutting, individuals may submit requests and data files online.  Requests will be processed and available for pickup near the Wond’ry’s 2nd Floor Mechanical Makerspace once completed.  For additional information, please email thewondry@vanderbilt.edu

The Wond’ry will continue offering extracurricular and co-curricular Entrepreneurship and Social Innovation programs, which will be offered online.  Applications for the Social Venture Think Tank are currently open, and applications for other programs will be opening soon.  Details for each program are available on the Wond’ry website.

The Wond’ry has always been a place on campus to attend innovative and informative events, lectures, and presentations.  Unfortunately, large scale events like the Wond’ry Open House and the Nashville Mini-Maker Faire will be cancelled or postponed until a future semester.  Other large scale events, such as VandyHacks and the Global Game Jam, will be exploring online options.

Since March 2020, the Wond’ry has been hosting lectures, presentations, and gatherings online via Zoom.  We will continue to offer online events throughout the Fall semester.  Our event schedule will be listed on the Wond’ry website at http://www.thewondry.com/onlineevents.

The Wond’ry Mentor network will continue to provide one-on-one access for students, faculty, and staff to a large group of professionals and experts across a variety of industries.  However, the Mentor program will now be facilitated with the Wond’ry Innovation Portal.   Virtual meetings with Mentors can be requested using the Innovation Portal system.  Additionally, through the Wond’ry’s partnership with I-Corps South at GA Tech, as well as other universities and colleges in the southeast, our pool of Mentors continues to expand to professionals outside the Nashville area.

The Wond’ry is committed to the safety and health of all, and as always, we welcome your innovative ideas as we navigate these unusual times.  Please feel free to contact us at thewondry@vanderbilt.edu with any questions or concerns.  We look forward to helping you innovate in the coming semester!


The Wond’ry Team


Social Venture Think Tank Applications Due August 14

The Wond’ry is now accepting applications to the Fall 2020 cohort of the Social Venture Think Tank (SVTT). Applications are due this Friday, August 14th at 11:59pm CT.  Click here to access the application.

During the 8-week Think Tank program, interdisciplinary teams of Vanderbilt students will develop a prototype of a new technological innovation for a local non-profit. This year’s projects will focus on local food systems, STEM education, and food justice in Nashville. Any undergraduate or graduate student who is interested in social entrepreneurship, design, consulting, and/or social innovation is encouraged to apply. Prior experience in technological innovation is not required.

Learn More About the Social Venture Think Tank Here


Coffee Equity Lab Applications Due August 15

In partnership with the Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities, The Wond’ry is now accepting applications from VU undergraduates to the Scholarship of Everyday Life: Coffee Cohort / Coffee Equity Lab.

Starting Fall 2020, accepted students will explore the complex socio-cultural, economic, environmental and political circumstances that shape the global coffee supply chain, through workshops and speaker events, research and experiential learning opportunities, and hands-on design projects. Applications are due this Saturday, August 15th at 11:59pm.

Click here to learn more and for application instructions


The Wond’ry & IBM Fantasy Football Draft Party – September 9

For the second year, the Wond’ry at Vanderbilt University is hosting an NFL Fantasy Football Draft Party using IBM Watson! Join us online for this fun and competitive event on Wednesday, September 9, 2020, 4:30 PM – 6:30 PM Central.

When selecting a ticket, please choose which league you want to join! Each league has limited spots and is being hosted by a different Vanderbilt student. You will need to register separately on the ESPN Fantasy Sports website to participate.  Click here for league signups on the Wond’ry website

Click here to get a free ticket


Innovation Open Mic

In collaboration with I-Corps South at Georgia Institute of Technology, the Wond’ry hosts a monthly Innovation Open Mic event, where aspiring innovators are invited to practice presenting their ideas and projects to a panel of entrepreneurial experts and mentors.  Whether a business, non-profit, technology, or invention, all ideas are welcome.  At the end of each event, presenters receive feedback from the mentor panel to help them improve their projects.

Check out the Innovation Open Mic page for info on applying.


In the News


COVID-19 Innovation at the Wond’ry

With the current global situation requiring changes big and small to our daily lives, the Wond’ry has been working to help develop innovative solutions to a number of pressing issues.  You can check on recent developments at a new page on our website:

COVID-19 Innovation at the Wond’ry


Online Events at the Wond’ry

Keep innovating at home by joining the Wond’ry for online events!  Hosted via Zoom, the Wond’ry will be bringing you interesting lectures, engaging workshops, and innovative virtual gatherings.

Check out our Online Events page:



Virtual Office Hours

The Wond’ry staff are now hosting virtual office hours via Zoom!  Check out the Wond’ry homepage to see available hours.  Please note that some staff members require you to book a timeslot via Calendly.  Alternatively, other staff members will have open Zoom meeting rooms during their scheduled times.


Stay Connected

For the most up-to-date information, event reminders, and opportunities connect with us on social media.


Twitter: theWondry
Instagram: thewondry
Facebook: theWONDRY
LinkedIn: thewondry


Located at:
2414 Highland Avenue
Suite 102
Nashville, TN 37212

(Please note: physical office is open by appointment only)

Connect with Us

For additional information on the Wond’ry, including office hours, please visit thewondry.com.


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