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Going Google, and Brainstorming with the Nueva School

March 10, 2009

Quote of the day: “My favorite part of this film is seeing the energy generated when this wonderful group of people comes into a room”—Rebecca, 8th-grade student at Nueva School, upon introducing the Darius Goes West crew to her classmates at an assembly.

From Santa Barbara, Darius and crew went to a screening at Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, California.

The Google “campus”, known as Googleplex, was a sight to see. It was modeled partially on the engineering school at Stanford, and it’s a lot like a really strange, really nice college. (Check out the replica T-Rex skeleton in the picture above!)

The screening was organized by Mike Winters, a UNC alum who found out about Darius Goes West and felt compelled to help.

We also got to catch up with Alai Tseggai, a former classmate of many of the crew-members and a long-time friend of the cause…

After the film showed, we brainstormed with the audience to find ways to utilize Google in our year-long, million-DVD goal. An initiative to donate DGW use of Google Adwords is now making the rounds at Google.

We raided Google’s delicious cafeteria, then were off. Thanks, Mike!

The next day, we were in Hillsborough for a stop at the Nueva School.

Our visit to Nueva was organized by Grace Voorhis, a Nueva School parent. She was one of the first DGW supporters, showing Darius and crew around the San Francisco Zoo during the original movie.

In fact, it was Grace’s idea for Darius to eat a spoonful of wasabi sauce at the zoo, so you can thank her for one of the funniest parts of the movie!

We spoke to an assembly and answered some questions…

then headed to a classroom for a problem-solving session with the students.

The idea was for the students—as a part of class—to break into smaller groups, ask us questions to identify one challenge we face in our million-DVD goal, then find a solution to that problem.

The students were organized…

they were tech-savvy…

and they shared some great ideas.

Near the end of the school day, students presented their ideas to everybody. With their help, we immediately improved the Darius Goes West forum and learned about what content we should focus on and how we should market it to empower people to take up our cause.

Joey, on the computer, and his team came up with this sweet graphic to be a cover for a future Darius music album:

While the school day was finally over, the students’ contributions were not.

Here’s a YouTube video that Jacob, a Nueva School student made endorsing Darius Goes West.

Thanks Grace, Rush Frank, Matt Levinson, Kim Saxe, and all the students and staff at the Nueva School!


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13 Responses to “Going Google, and Brainstorming with the Nueva School”

  1. On March 10th, 2009, Lelia said:

    Hey Guys,
    Great post. It is so exciting to hear about and see the places you are visiting. Our positive thoughts are with you and we look forward to your return to Gainesville.
    Go DGW!
    Lelia Ginder

  2. On March 10th, 2009, Grace Voorhis said:

    Thanks for coming West, again, guys! We loved you at Nueva. Watch out - perception becomes reality. The next time you come west, you should eat your food carefully. There actually might be wasabi in it!

  3. On March 11th, 2009, tristan cottarel said:

    i love how you put jacob’s video up

  4. On March 11th, 2009, Hugo said:

    Awesome! Love the video!

  5. On March 11th, 2009, Hannah said:

    great site! I loved visiting!

  6. On March 11th, 2009, Connor said:

    you guys are really great and what you are doing helps the world and not just one person.

  7. On March 13th, 2009, Alexis Alvarez said:

    Darius, I am very inspired by you. I think you are a hero and someone that anyone can look up to. I think you have a very postive attitude about everything and have faith in God. I bet that God is very pleased with you with everything you said and done to help people. And I bet your brother Mario is up in heaven smiling down at you. You are a hero. I hope that you keep moving west for as long as you live. You deserve it. I hope that God helps you and your family forever. Darius, I will keep you in my prayers, I hope that you keep doing what you do. God bless you and you family.

    P.S. I think your wheelchair is totally cool. I think its really pimped out. Keep those spinners spinning.

  8. On March 13th, 2009, Alexis Alvarez said:

    Good job. Yalkl did a good job on the movie. comtinue doing what you do.

  9. On March 13th, 2009, Holly said:

    Hey Darius how you doing I think that you are very good and I think that you are inspiring people all over the world.

  10. On March 13th, 2009, Holly said:

    Good job

  11. On March 15th, 2009, Jacob said:

    Thanks for putting my video up that means a lot to me!!!

  12. On March 19th, 2009, Joel said:

    Hey you called me Joey and my name is Joel lol… its ok tho :)

  13. On March 29th, 2009, Grace R said:

    Sweet! This is awesome! I’m two photos! It was really nice of you guys to come to our school. All of the kids had a great time. <3

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