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One Thousand Origami ‘Cranes for Peace’ on Display in Florida Tech’s Evans Library

Students, Staff, Faculty and Community Members Fulfill Japanese Legend

MELBOURNE, FLA. — An ancient Japanese legend states that folding 1,000 origami cranes will lead to a wish being granted. A variation of the legend holds that creating a senbazuru – one thousand origami cranes held together by string – will lead to eternal good luck.

Thanks to students, staff and faculty at Florida Institute of Technology and members of the general public, both legends will be put to the test.

On April 24, about 10 weeks after the university’s Evans Library opened an exhibit celebrating the Japanese art of paper folding, known as origami, and put forth the challenge of folding “1,000 cranes for peace,” the magic number was achieved.

Lisa Petrillo, the library’s user experience specialist, helped research the exhibit – which featured four display cases filled with original origami created by Petrillo, Florida Tech’s Web Application Analyst Ian Koss, and Florida Tech students – and came up with the challenge. She set up a folding station to encourage library visitors to participate.

“Every time I looked up, there was a different person folding a crane,” noted James Baucom, who works at the library’s front desk.

After the 1,000-crane mark was hit, Angela Taylor, the library’s director of enabling infrastructure, strung them together. There are now 25 strings of 40 cranes on display in the lobby. The senbazuru will remain on display until mid-August, when the fall 2015 semester begins.

“Learning about other cultures is part of what the library is all about, and building relationships with people from different cultures is key in building the diverse community Florida Tech prides itself on,” said Dean of Libraries Sohair Wastawy. “Change only occurs when we connect with each other through traditions and learning as it unlocks new perspectives into other cultures.”

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