“The Odd Encounters” begins its experiment at Troy

Kianna Collins
Arts and Entertainment Editor

There comes a time in everyone’s life to meet someone he or she expected to be incompatible with, but, through an unexpected common interest, they become friends.
Some might describe this situation as an “odd encounter.”
The experiment started Tuesday, Nov. 4. It will continue for the entire month of November.
Edward Noriega, director and professor of design, and his Design Studio class will be conducting a social experiment called “The Odd Encounters,” using various forms of social media, such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
The experiment will explore the differences in people from various backgrounds, with the intention being for the participants to gain appreciation for those differences and to discover what brings them together.
Ten students from the class designed 10 sets of unique buttons using a theme of two opposing personality traits. Some basic examples were: introversion or extroversion, neat or messy, and the ability to be responsible or irresponsible.
Once the buttons were completed, the designers attached them to cards that had instructions on what to do next.
The buttons were then given to department secretaries along with a letter telling them to distribute the buttons to students who they think will participate in the experiment.
Once a student gets a button, he or she is encouraged to find the person who has the matching button through social media sites. The experiment can be boiled down to a big scavenger hunt via social media.
Once a pair has found each other, they will notify the designer of the buttons.
This is only the first phase of the experiment.
The second phase is setting up an interview between the pair and the designer. The designer will determine whether the interview will be online or in person.  The interview questions will highlight either differences or similarities between two people who wouldn’t have normally met.
A piece will then be created based on the answers of the two individuals.
Additional portions of the experiment are the various stickers that will be placed around campus. If a student finds a sticker on campus, he or she can take a picture of the sticker and post it on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook with the hashtag #TheOddEncounters.
If a participant in the experiment isn’t sure of what to do, he or she should contact the respective designer of the button received.
For more information on the experiment, students can contact Noriega at enoriega@troy.edu.

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