My biggest takeaways from the storytelling lab with Justine and Oren were:
1. Importance of contrast - a story is oftentimes most intriguing when there are key points of contrast. In our case, this could be achieved by describing East Palo Alto and related statististics (% of EPA students that go to college, high school rankings, x% below the national poverty line, etc) and contrasting this with the Phoenix Academy and what the students there are trying to do (the school is a beacon of hope for these kids, they show up for school despite incredible commutes, they work hard to get good grades, the school is doing its job in preparing them academically, they are overcoming all odds in spite of the surrounding environment). This contrast shows these students as doing everything in their power to make a better life for themselves...and the only thing they are missing is the financial support they need to do so. This contrast creates a more compelling reason to donate.
2. Use of ticking clock- I had not previously thought about it, but Oren and Justine noted that we could really generate a compelling call to action by using the idea of firsts (this class is the first to graduate from EPAPA, these students are the first in their families to go to college, they went to their first prom this year, etc). The fact that these students are graduating from high school in 2010 creates a greater since of urgency for people to go ahead and get involved now. Oren and Justine did a great job of bringing this point out for us, something I think we had largely overlooked.