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“Follow your heart“ by Margherita Paola Poto, Emily Margaret Murray & Valentina Russo, is an illustrated book following the story of Cora, a young girl not knowing which one of her passions to pursue as a job when she grows up.


We are a group of five university students in sustainability who have been tasked with planning a way to present this book to our course colleagues. The way we have decided to do so is through a starting question: “What did you want to do when you grow up?” and we asked the participants to write on a piece of paper all the jobs they wanted to do when they were children. We gave the participants a couple of minutes to write their answers down and encouraged them to write as many answers as they wanted, then we collected the papers and hung them on a corkboard with colourful pins, leaving the centre of the board empty. After that, we started telling them the story of Cora, with the aid of presentation slides to showcase some of the illustrations in the book.


Figure 1. The cover of our presentation slides.

As the story was being told, we connected all the pieces of paper on the board with a piece of red yarn, leading to the empty centre. As we reached the end of the narration, we hung there a small handmade plush heart, connecting with the piece of yarn, signifying that all passions lead to the heart. Afterwards, we shared with our audience handmade heart-shaped chocolate chip cookies, as a way to again engage with our audience through different senses, and as we did that, we discussed the story with them.


The main theme of the story we wanted to highlight is “multipotentiality”, by highlighting how many times most of us have changed our minds about our dream job throughout our lives, and how many times we have developed new passions. As is told in the story, we wanted to focus on the fact that, regardless of the inner confusion this multitude of interests and passions may bring, this plurality is a strength, which can lead to innovation. For this reason, we wanted to reignite the passion in our audience’s hearts, the same one they had as children, and give them back the courage to dream big, regardless of society’s pressure to pick something, perhaps a thing they are good at, or the thing that will bring them the most money, and stick with it until retirement.


Figure 2. The corkboard

It might be odd to say that an audience of university students mostly in their early twenties need encouragement to have dreams, but it’s easy, even in a stimulant environment like academia, to forget about one’s passions external to their specific field of study, and forget about their creativity and imagination. These are the reasons why we included in our project objects handcrafted by us, like the heart and the cookies, to share our creative passions with the audience and maybe encourage them to pick up (or pick back up) a creative hobby themselves and in general to engage with all their passions and interests, because it’s at the intersection of all the things that make our heart beat fast that we’ll find our true calling. Or maybe not, and that is why we should always keep looking inside ourselves, and follow our heart.


Figure 3. The heart-shaped, homemade cookies





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