Case Study

Purpose Bootcamps

Boston University is a private, non-profit, research university in Boston, MA, comprising of 33,000 students and 3,900 faculty members.

Boston University’s Innovate@BU program was developed in 2017 to equip BU students with innovation skills and an entrepreneurial mindset and prepared students to create a meaningful impact in their careers and communities.

After identifying a desire to diversify their program topics, Boston University decided to enlist the help of Ethos to create a soft-skill co-curricular program, Purpose Bootcamp, presented by professional purpose and communication coaches.

“This bootcamp tested one’s purpose and mission in life. It really made me think about the next steps I have to take after I graduate.”

Boston University Student ’20

Key Phases

Program Development

To ensure the requested program aligned with student needs, Ethos developed a custom needs analysis for Innovate@BU. In coordination with university staff, Ethos ran a focus group with BU undergraduates that assessed:

  1. How students currently find and define the concept of purpose
  2. Motivations for career paths and entrepreneurship
  3. How students perceive the role of passion and purpose in their post-graduate pursuits

A needs analysis allowed Ethos to identify gaps in students understanding and application of purposeful work. Ethos worked with Innovate@BU to customize a co-curricular with subject matter experts that was able to provide novel skill development oriented toward purpose.

Marketing and Outreach

Community Engagement: Considering Innovate@BU’s goal to engage the entire campus community in their program, Ethos designed a program that created multiple points for stakeholder engagement. Stakeholders from the broader campus community (faculty, adjuncts, administrators, alumni, donors, Boston community institutions) were included in the program as facilitators, speakers, and mentors.

To engage students who had no previous interaction with Innovate@BU, business leaders from Boston spoke to students about their pathways to success and driving force behind their career. Community members spoke on nontraditional career paths, activating purpose in their lives, and leadership development. The speakers included Busola Laguda, VP of Global Credit Finance for State Street Bank and Kimberly D. Lucas, Director of Civic Research at the Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics.

Marketing: In addition to program development, multi-media marketing materials were designed and delivered by Ethos for distribution within Boston University and Innovate@BU’s channels. Materials included, digital and print promotion flyers, social media banners, Eventbrite assets, and online copy for email outreach campaigns. Additional assets for intrauniversity marketing channels were also developed.

Program Delivery and Feedback

The co-curricular program was built to maximize student engagement during the Purpose Camp and with the BUild Lab after the program’s conclusion. The purpose bootcamp is designed to help students better understand how they can be strong agents of innovation, creativity, and transformation for in their communities and in their careers.

The program featured a purpose coach and a communications coach to build a basis of purpose development and communicate their understanding as well. The coaches were:

The program was very transformative. I walked away myself with wonderful tools I am excited to begin practicing

BUild Lab Staff Member

Program Delivery and Feedback

The co-curricular program was built to maximize student engagement during the Purpose Camp and with the BUild Lab after the program’s conclusion. The purpose bootcamp is designed to help students better understand how they can be strong agents of innovation, creativity, and transformation for in their communities and in their careers.

The program featured a purpose coach and a communications coach to build a basis of purpose development and communicate their understanding as well. The coaches were:

Kelsey Crouch

Kelsey is a leading communications coach having worked with TEDsters with over 2 mill views, to Fortune 100 professionals, Fortune 500 CEOs, innovation frontrunners, and social activist superstars. Kelsey spent 25 years in theatre, film performance, and special event production. She is a member of the immersive theatre company, Odyssey Works, where she and an expanding team of artists create transformative experiences for audiences of one person, performed once and never again.

Zach Mercurio

Zach is the bestselling author of “The Invisible Leader: Transform Your Life, Work, and Organization with the Power of Authentic Purpose” and is the founder of PurposeSpeaks.com, the popular blog on purposeful leadership. His work has been featured internationally with outlets such as ForbesBooks, The Huffington Post, Thrive Global, Acuity Magazine, and he is a regular guest on a wide range of leadership and organizational development podcasts.

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