Introduction

Goodman IMPRESS program launched

Goodman IMPRESS program launched

Whitman 100 graphic

Goodman IMPRESS program launched

students holding the Goodman IMPRESS cup

What do Harry Potter and a smartphone app have to do with training tomorrow’s business leaders? At Syracuse University, plenty. The Goodman IMPRESS program. IMPRESS creates competition among students to gain critical career skills. Students in turn track their progress on a smart phone app and earn “game points” by taking part in a variety of career-building programs outside of their normal classwork. Attend a lecture, earn points. Gain Microsoft certification, earn more points. Students earn points for taking part in programs, including personal and professional leadership development, major and industry exploration, and community engagement.

These symbols represent the four houses that comprise IMPRESS: Adams, Harrison, Marshall and Waverly.

Student teams are divided into four houses (Adams, Marshall, Waverly and Harrison), each with a faculty advisor who serves as a house master, and each with its own name and shield, a la Harry Potter. The team with the most points at the end of the year wins the Goodman Cup, named after program supporter Kenneth Goodman ’70.

The use of game thinking and game mechanics in a non-game context is at the heart of gamification, a concept that’s gaining popularity in higher education. In a nutshell, gamification employs the use of a game to make difficult or challenging work fun.

Goodman IMPRESS program participants are notified via text about their next opportunity to earn points.

“The IMPRESS Program was a main reason why I chose to attend Syracuse. When I learned about what the program entailed aside from my academic career, I was sold. Similar to the college application process, landing a job is more than just being proficient in your field of study. It’s mandatory that I can present myself well, interact with others gracefully, give back to others and know what is going on around me. Not only am I learning all of that through IMPRESS to improve my chances of getting my dream job, but those skills will help me achieve success throughout my lifetime—no matter what the situation may be,” said Nicole Anna DeMentri ’18.