Wintersession Workshops

Saturday, January 21, 2023

100 Insitute Road
Innovation Studio
Worcester, MA 01609
United States



WinterSession workshops is a space for learning, collaboration, and hands-on experimental discovery. In a couple days at the start of C Term, students, staff, faculty and alumni explore new ideas, are introduced to new skills, or ways of seeing. In this space, students are free to explore, try, fail, and discover without the risks associated with grades and graduation requirements. This is a space for fun, learning, for learnings sake.

This student imagined space, shifts and changes from year to year offering new workshops, opportunities, and options and yet the heart of the project remains the same. Create a space where non-academic learning is valued and celebrated, where learning moves beyond the classroom and into the community, and where we can explore and experiment with new ideas and new skills in a collaborative and supportive environment.

Explore the wonder of WinterSession...

1.  Ballroom Dancing:  Dance with Confidence at Social Events   

Riley Commons

Instructor: Jay Yen, WPI Ballroom Dance Team

Saturday, Jan 21, 1:00-2:00 PM

Sunday, Jan 22, 1:00-2:00 PM

When was the last time you danced? We will offer a ballroom dancing session for two sessions. Each class will teach a different style of dance (Waltz, Cha Cha) with no previous dance experience required nor expected, just comfortable clothing and socks or shoes. Swing into the classes solo or with a partner and have fun dancing!

Register here


2. Building Your Digital Brand: LinkedIn Profiles, Portfolios, and Resumes  

Innovation Studio

Instructor: Julia Sheats, BS/MS Mechanical Engineering ‘23

Saturday, Jan 21, 4:00-5:00 PM

Sunday, Jan 22, 12:00-1:00 PM

Register here


3. Converting Voice of Customer to Product Design and Features  

Innovation Studio

Instructor: Hemant Abjani '15, MBA, P.E.

Sunday, Jan 22, 11:00 AM- 12:00 PM

How do you analyze customer feedback and integrate that feedback into your product design? In this session, we will review practical tactics to convert customer interviews into product specs. Decipher which features to prioritize in your product design and what features do not give you much bang for the buck. Come prepared with a project you are working on that we can use as a workshop exercise.

Register here


4. Discovering Your Purpose: How to BECOME a Changemaker

Innovation Studio

Instructor: Kristin Asadoorian, Social Worker, Professional Development Coach, Founder Living Become, LLC

Come discover more about who you are, what is important to you and how you can create change. You will be taught how to find purpose in your work and education and discover your ability to create change within your communities. Your voice and energy are important, come learn how to use them to better yourself and others.

  • Build self-awareness and self-confidence
  • Become more empowered
  • Learn how to lead with compassion

Register here


5. Feel Good Foods!

Innovation Studio

Instructor: Shavaun Cloran, Registered Dietitian, Chartwells

Saturday, Jan 21, 11:00 AM-12:00 PM; 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM

Join Shavaun Cloran, RD, in learning about the science and art of nutrition in a way that creates connection and peace with your mind and body. Learn how to approach food and nutrition in a way that cultivates positivity and leaves room for the things in life that matter most. This is an interactive workshop that provides a tasty snack!! 

Register here


6. Impress Your Date by Making Sushi- Capacity: 8 per session

Morgan Hall- Halal Shack

Instructor: Soul Bounnaphol- Chef & Director of The Halal Shack, Chartwells

Saturday, Jan 21, 10:00-11:30 AM

Saturday, Jan 21, 2:00-3:30 PM

Roll up your sleeves and learn how to make sushi. This class touch base on the basic of sushi making which includes a brief discussion about the methods, the ingredients, the tools, and different techniques. The rest of our time we will be hand-on rolling the perfect sushi. Happiness follows!



7. Introduction to Acrylic Painting

Innovation Studio 

Instructor: Renee Cullman, Outreach Chair, Art and Design Club

Saturday, Jan 21, 11:30 AM -12:30 PM (THIS SESSION IS FULL)

Sunday, Jan 22, 3:00-4:00 PM

Give your inner artist a chance to grow! In this workshop, you will learn some basic painting techniques. We will take you step by step as you create a scene using the medium of acrylic paint.

Register here


8. Knitting 101  

Innovation Studio

Instructor: Helen Brumley, MA, NCC, Counselor Student Development & Counseling Center

Saturday, Jan 21, 3:00-4:00 PM

Sunday, Jan 22, 3:00-4:00 PM

Both a post-apocalyptic life skill and a helpful stress management technique, knitting can be a great way to pass the dreary Worcester winters. Join us as we lead you through beginner knitting techniques and discuss the mechanics of knitting, choosing the right yarn and needles, basic pattern reading, and more! This workshop will progress students through knitting basics, and students will leave with the skills and pattern needed to complete their own scarf at home. Skills taught: casting on, knit stitch, purl stitch, basic stitching patterns (garter, stockinette, seed stitch), binding off, and pattern reading.




9. Makerspace Custom T-shirt Making - 10 per half-hour session 

Innovation Studio- Makerspace

Instructors: Mitra Anand, Makerspace Advanced Technology & Prototyping Specialist

                   Adam Murrison, Makerspace Prototyping Assistant

Saturday, Jan 21, 10:00; 10:30; 11:00; 11:30

Come and learn how to make custom t-shirts using the vinyl cutter and other equipment available at the WPI Makerspace! In this workshop, you will have the option to cut the Makerspace logo, or another graphic from vinyl to then be pressed onto your shirt. T-shirts will be provided, but you can also bring your own t-shirts or cotton hoodies!  



10.  Makerspace Simulated Drone Racing- Learn, Practice and Race – Capacity:  24

Innovation Studio 

Instructors: Mitra Anand, Makerspace Advanced Technology & Prototyping Specialist

                  Nicholas Johannessen, Makerspace Prototyping Assistant

Saturday, Jan 21, 2:00 PM-5:00 PM (Introduction and Practice Session using Drone Simulator Software)

Sunday, Jan 22, 2:00 PM -5:00 PM (Main Event:  One-on-One Knockout Competition)

Come and learn how to fly drones in a simulator, practice, and race against your peers for top honors!

Learn the principles of and fly drones in a simulated obstacle course environment. Quadcopter dynamics are introduced, and participants practice their skills using a simulator on Day 1 and culminating in an exciting knockout competition on Day 2.

Day 1: Introduction and Practice Session using Drone Simulator Software

Day 2: Main Event: Knockout Competition

Register here


11. Personal Branding- The Art of You 

Innovation Studio

Instructor: Rob Sarnie - Professor of Practice, WPI Business School, WPI FinTech Project Center Director 

Saturday, Jan 21, 12:00 – 1:00 PM

Who are you? What makes you unique? What makes you a superman/superwoman? 
In this workshop you will learn how to analyze your strengths, ask your co-workers how they view you and create a "personal brand", that is unique. If you know your skills, capabilities and competencies and most importantly, the core values that shape you, you can define yourself. 

Why is it important to create a “personal brand”?

It's important to promote your brand during all interactions and encounters whether in person or via email or on social media. The 4 key aspects of your brand are your look, how you sound, how you act, and what you believe. "Your brand is your reputation over time." 

Register here


12. How To Predict Tech Trends

Innovation Studio

Instructor: Monty Sharma, Managing Director, Massachusetts Digital Games Institute (MassDigi) at WPI

Saturday, Jan 21, 1:00 – 2:00 PM

We live in a fast-paced world with new discoveries popping up in every field.  How do you develop a vision of what is coming next? How do you analyze new opportunities to determine if they are a game changer or a flash in the pan? In this workshop, you will learn a methodology to track and analyze what is happening in your field. By keeping your eye on this you can pick the best company to work for or see the chance to start a business.

Register here


13. How to Find and Build a $100 Million Business: What Engineers and Scientists Need to Know to Have Huge Impact 

Innovation Studio

Instructor: Monti Sharma, Managing Director, Massachusetts Digital Games Institute (MassDigi) at WPI

Sunday, Jan 22, 1:00 PM-2:00 PM

There are likely a number of $100 million ideas around campus just waiting to be uncovered. So, how do you identify one? What do you need to understand about technology innovation in order to be successful? Identify the right kind of solution based on the state of technology and the structure of that sector. And, learn how to find the perfect customer to get things started.

Register here


14. Using Negotiations to Create Wins

Innovation Studio

Instructor: Hemant Abjani '15, MBA, P.E.

Saturday, Jan 21, 2:00-3:00 PM

Sunday, Jan 22, 2:00-3:00 PM

Negotiations come in many forms!  Whether it’s to advance an idea with your startup team, acquire a customer, or reach an agreement on job salary, we all negotiate several times per day.  Join us in fun, hands-on exercises to learn negotiation concepts and strategies and be more confident and influential. 

Register here


15. Self-Defense  

Rec Center- Dance Studio A,B,C

Instructor: Koksal Mus, Electrical & Computer Engineering, Assistant Professor of Teaching

Sunday, Jan 22, 10:00-11:00 AM

This workshop is a safe, fun and exciting experience that combines self-defense education, tips on incident avoidance and how to defend yourself as well as hands-on practice in simulated common street attacks. You will practice easy methods that can rapidly disable an attacker and give yourself the opportunity to escape.

Register here


16. Getting Started with AI Art

Innovation Studio

Instructor: Gillian Smith, Director of WPI Interactive Media and Game Development Program, Associate Professor of Computer Science

Sunday, Jan 22, 11:00-12:00 PM; 12:30- 1:30 PM

Learn about how to use current AI Art generation tools, and a bit about how they work! This is a hands-on workshop where we’ll experiment with current AI art tools, learn about prompt design, imagine creative projects that incorporate generated imagery, and discuss these tools’ ramifications for art, technology, and society. No programming experience required! Please bring a laptop.

Register here


17. Nurturing Your Idea: Intellectual Property Overview

Innovation Studio

Instructor: Karen Coghlan, JD MS MLIS, Licensed Attorney, WPI Research & Instruction Librarian

Sunday, Jan 22, 12:00-1:00 PM, 2:00-3:00 PM

Creative solutions can be used to solve everyday challenges. These solutions start as a seed of an idea, and sometimes, those ideas grow into something that can be used to change our lives. The light bulb, iPad, and the Star Wars film universe all started as an idea. When you have an idea, how do you ensure that you are recognized for your hard work in bringing it to life? Patents, trademarks, and copyright are tools that can be used to nurture and protect these ‘creations of the mind’ and allow reuse and credit. Inventions, literary & artistic works, designs, logos, and images, can be registered and become protected intellectual property business assets. Join us, for an interactive hands-on session with seed takeaways, for an introduction to intellectual property rights and strategies.

Register here


18. Snowflake Making

Innovation Studio- Makerspace

Instructor: Molly Clem

Sunday, Jan 22, 10:00-11:00 PM, 4:00-5:00 PM

 Chill with us and make fun winter decorations. Learn cool tricks and tips for complex designs, three-dimensional snowflakes, and frosty greeting cards. We have templates if you want to relax and unwind, or you can get creative try something new and go with the snow. Hope to see you there. 

Register here



**Please make sure you sign up for workshops that do not overlap. 

**Please register for workshops you plan on attending. In consideration of other students, please do not over-commit by signing up for too many workshops. Spaces are limited. 

**Lunch will be provided for attendees on both days from 11:30am-1pm.



Registration Deadline
Contact Person
Lusine Baghsarian