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Design Thinking from
Inspiration to Innovation -
Nov. 16, 2007

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Design Thinking: From Inspiration to Innovation

A deep look into the creative process of problem solving; how to inspire, analyze, collaborate and actualize

8:30 – 4:00
Kutztown University’s
Annual Art Education Conference

Conference Schedule:

8:00–8:30 Registration, McFarland Student Union, Alumni Auditorium
8:30–8:45 Welcome and Introductions
Dean Mowder
Dr. John H. White, Chair, Art Education and Crafts Department
Dr. Martin Rayala, Conference Co-chair
Prof. Lyn Godley, Conference Co-chair
Prof. Denise Bosler, Conference Co-chair

Round Table: What is Design Thinking? Design Thinking explores the process through which design problems are approached. This process provides unique opportunity for other applications.

Denise Bosler: Communication
Lyn Godley: Problem solving
Martin Rayala: Functionality

9:15–10:00 Keynote Speaker: Sandy Speicher, IDEO
10:15–11:00 Keynote Speaker: Steven Brower, Designer/Educator
11:15–11:45 Introduction to afternoon workshops
12:00–1:00 Lunch, McFarland Student Union, Multipurpose Room President Cevallos
1:15–2:00 Workshops, Rooms TBA
2:00–2:10 Break
2:10–2:55 Workshops
2:55–3:05 Break
3:05–3:50 Workshops

Workshop Schedule/Information

Research - Outside of the Extraordinary
Sandy Speicher, IDEO, Keynote Speaker

Independently ranked by global business leaders as one of the world’s most innovative companies, we use design thinking to help clients navigate the speed, complexity, and opportunity areas of today’s world.

Workshop Description: Join keynote speaker, Sandy Speicher, in a continuation of the discussion about designing outside the extraordinary. Use this opportunity to ask the questions you didn’t get to ask following her morning keynote. Find out how IDEO became one of the top design firms in the world and what Sandy has learned about design and education and how design can contribute to PK-12 education. Learn more about the concept of Transformation practice at IDEO.

Biography: Sandy Speicher is a member of IDEO’s Transformation practice, focusing on the design of learning tools and experiences. The Transformation practice helps clients use the tools and methods of design to work in new ways, to address the challenges of the future, and to affect change in their organizations. Sandy has lead and contributed to a range of programs in industries such as telecommunications, healthcare, and education. Much of her work has been with school teachers, students, and administrators, exploring how design thinking can contribute to systems of P–12 education.

Prior to joining IDEO, Sandy taught Visual Communications at Washington University in St. Louis and to 5th graders at Redding Elementary School in San Francisco. Her work includes identity systems, interactive design, and environmental design for clients such as WU School of Art, the Institute of Contemporary Art Boston, The Paine Art Center and Gardens, and AT&T. Much of her career was spent at MetaDesign San Francisco working with clients such as the Denver Art Museum, The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Palm, Netflix, Ernst & Young, and Wells Fargo.

Sandy holds an MA in Education in the Learning, Design and Technology program at Stanford University and a BFA in Visual Communications from Washington University in St. Louis.

Concept Exercises - Hands on Problem Solving
Vicki Meloney and Dean Ballas, Assistant Professors KUCD

Workshop Description: Nobel prizewinning scientist Linus Pauling said, “The best way to get good ideas is to have lots of ideas.”

How do we conceive ideas and develop them to fruition? We each have developed a process by which we create — methods we rely upon to achieve successful visual communication solutions. Through trial and error, our creative process toolboxes have been carefully built. Each box contains our own tools enabling us to develop solutions that refine our graphic communication. We keep detailed documentation of my own design process and encourage others to do the same. Prior to this practice, if asked about how we create, we would not be able to give any kind of proper answer. Many creative thinkers are also in this same position. Asking questions about how they create, they too can begin to look inside and discover the tools they are using to design.

The brainstorming workshop will delve into some tried and true idea generating exercises. This is an experience where you are asked to embrace spontaneity and hunt for “happy accidents” in your work. Creative exploration can result in the discovery of a single, unique idea that you can build an entire creative project upon.

Biography: Dean Ballas— I received my M. F. A. in Graphic Design from Miami International University of Art & Design in 2005. My thesis research was focused on idea generation and the creative process.

My philosophy entails not having an exact process for every design solution developed. An exploratory designer, I embrace the spontaneity and uniqueness each creative endeavor presents. A strategically focused, creative professional with exemplary leadership and management skills, I encourage, build, and guide members of my creative team. I pride myself in being an effective problem solver skilled in developing design strategies and creating distinctive imagery. I am known for developing strategic design vision, facilitating creative processes, expanding imaginative horizons, leading creative teams, and creative process guidance.

Vicki Meloney —I received my M. F. A. in Visual Communications from Temple University's, Tyler School of Art in 1997. I have worked as a professional Graphic Designer in and around the Philadelphia area for more then 15 years. I have enjoyed creating interesting and thought provoking logos, brochures, packaging, advertising for both international clients and small mom-and-pop companies. Regardless of the size of the project, the creative process remains the same. You must start with really good ideas and really good ideas are generated through brainstorming. I look forward to sharing some of my brainstorming techniques


Cooper-Hewitt’s Educational Programs ‑ Providing Insight Into the Ways in Which Design Shapes Our Lives Every Day.
Kim Robledo-Diga, School Programs Manager, Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum

Workshop Description: Find and create design-focused lesson plans, talk to educators from around the country, view videos and more on Cooper-Hewitt’s online Educator Resource Center. Learn about A City of Neighborhoods; a program that invites students, teachers, community leaders, architects, civic leaders, and others—to work together to apply design education to a neighborhood context. Hear about Summer-Design Institute; a program where educators are invited to join f renowned designers and design educators as they share strategies for engaging K-12 students in the design process

Biography: Kim Robledo-Diga, has over seven years of experience in arts education. As School Programs Manager at Cooper-Hewitt she is responsible for integrating design into local and national school curricula standards, through professional development programs such as Summer Design Institute and A City of Neighborhoods. Kim earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts with a Minor in Art History from the Maryland Institute, College of Art, and a Master of Fine Arts with additional studies in arts administration from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

2:10 - 2:55pm

Brainstorming - Quit Working And Get Back To Play
Steven Brower, Designer/ Educator, Owner of Steven Brower Design, Keynote Speaker

Workshop Description: The workshop is a hands on participatory class in which teachers will work on assignments that they later will be able to give to their students. It will include an overall understanding of communication in its most basic form, the need for self-expression within the confines of the assignments given, and possible outlets for this creativity.

Biography: Steven Brower is the principal of Steven Brower Design. He is the former creative director for PRINT and an associate of the PushPin Group. He has been an art director for The New York Times and The Nation magazine. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including honors from AIGA, American Center for Design, Art Directors Club, Brno Biennale, Cooper-Hewitt’s National Design Museum, Graphis, How, Literary Market Place, Martin Biennale, New York Book Show, the Society of Publication Designers, and the Type Directors Club. His work is in the permanent collections of the Smithsonian Institution; Les Silo, Maison du Livre et de l’Affiche; and the Merrill C. Berman Collection. His work has appeared in several books on the subject of graphic design. His book, Woody Guthrie Artworks, was published by Rizzoli in October 2005, and 2D: Visual Basics for Designers, by Delmar in 2006.

Material World Inspiring Critical Thinking Through Innovation, Design & Education
Heather Smart, Curator of the Angelo Donghia Material Library & Study Center

Workshop Description: Whatever happened to show and tell? ‘Wow…that’s cool, what is it?’ …How can this type of excitement be infused into K-12 grade education? The goal of this workshop is to reinforce the importance of a Design Education that is infused with Material education to get students thinking critically about the choices they make in what they consume, where the play, what they choose to surround themselves with and WHY. Humans are consumers; children are far from exempt…in fact they’re prime targets. Children make decisions that affect commerce, our environment, and many other spheres in ways they can hardly understand, and will continue to do so as they get older. Equipping them with the tools to critically evaluate an object, a toy, or a piece of packaged food, as a “designed object” with embedded implications is a necessary step to ensure the sustainability of our planet over their own generations.

It’s truly amazing to see a child’s face (or an adult’s face, for that matter) light up when they recognize all of the possibilities they envision for an object, a product, a MATERIAL. But how much do they really know about these things they love? The research process is critical to design, especially pertaining to material selection, and I am an advocate of peer-to-peer education through material culture and research. (This method is also commonly known as SHOW AND TELL!) People love to share what they know the most about. And it doesn’t always have to be the students teaching each other; but how often are they asked to investigate a household object? A classroom object? By what kind of criteria? Our curriculum is intended to provide a model where you are inspiring students to inquire deeply into the objects they live with and around. Material and Design Education can leave children with a heightened sense of social consciousness and interactivity with their world.

Biography: My life in design began at a small community college in Connecticut getting my Associates Degree in Communication Design. That brought me to study and get my BFA through the Integrated Design Curriculum at Parsons; now known as Parsons The New School For Design. I chose to make my focus in IDC product design and architecture. From my experience in getting my associates, I couldn’t see design as a segregated process, so it felt quite natural to go into IDC with those two concentrations in mind because to me product design and architecture are integrated fields.

My sophomore year at Parsons I fell in love…with materials, and materials research. I worked as a research assistant for Grace Jeffers; an author, art historian and a mentor to me in many ways. I continued researching her book on materials throughout the remainder of my stay at Parsons as a student. My DEP (more commonly known in IDC as your Design Enterprise Project) was The Materials Dock: an interdisciplinary tool designed for creative professionals to research materials despite the background they may be coming from or level of experience in their field.

Shortly after graduating I received a call from the AIDL (Architecture, Interior Design & Lighting) department at Parsons, The New School For Design as they were looking for a co-curator for their material library. As a former patron of the library, I was thrilled to have such a great opportunity to put my ideas to practice here. I was later promoted to Curator, of the Angelo Donghia Material Library and have been doing this since the Spring Semester of 2006. I will also be teaching a class in the Continuing Education Department titled Innovative Materials in the Fall 07 Semester.

Biomimicry -Then and Now!
Erika Doering, Parsons the New School for Design, Dept. of Product Design

Workshop Description: Biomimicry (Greek: Bios - life; and mimesis - imitation) has been studied over the ages as an inspiration for creativity. Recently, Biomimicry has enjoyed a reintroduction as a tool to rethink our creative approach. Today, we have been humbled by our realization and acceptance, as fact, of the enormity of our global environmental troubles caused by human activity. Biomimicry is an exciting, optimistic and successful tool to reverse and restore some of the depletion and damage done. Biomimicry is a teaching tool and an endless resource for actual problem solving, product development, material invention, engineering solutions for smart products and sustainable material development. Biomimicry as a life philosophy will provide endless inspiration and wonder.

Biography: Erika Doering is a Brooklyn based designer specializing in green design for private residences, public spaces, commercial studios and retail stores. She is currently teaching smart design at Parsons – The New School (NYC) and co-developed a daylong seminar, “Educating the Educators: Crash Course on Eco Design” for the faculty and design educators. She is a board member of O2 NY and co-produced the acclaimed exhibition Assignment: Green at the Municipal Arts Society, which incorporated work from eco design students at six prominent NYC design schools. She is also a co-founder of the Association of Women Industrial Designers (AWID).


Designing in 3D Opportunities in Second Life
Bart Pursel, Instructor/Designer, IST Solutions Institute Educational Game Designer, Education Technology Services,The Pennsylvania State University

Workshop Description: This session will provide an introduction to Second Life, a three dimensional virtual world where the inhabitants drive the experience.

Topics that will be touched upon

  • Opportunities in Second Life: Providing experiences not feasible in reality
  • Designing in Second Life: things to take into consideration
  • Lessons learned from working in Second Life
  • A demonstration of Second Life

Upon completion of the presentation, the audience will have an understanding of what Second Life and the unique opportunities it presents for educators at all levels.

Biography: Bart Pursel is currently working for Penn State University in a variety of roles that involve designing learning environments (specifically with games and virtual world technology) teaching introductory courses for the college of Information Sciences and Technology, and working with Education Technology Services on building an educational gaming initiative. Bart has been with the IST Solutions Institute for nearly eight years, primarily as an instructional designer and project manager, working within a multi-disciplinary team to create innovative online courseware and learning support systems. Before arriving at Penn State, Bart received his Master’s degree from Bloomsburg University’s Department of Instructional Technology as well as a Bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications. Bart is currently working on his Doctorate at Penn State, which focuses on virtual teaming in 3D virtual environments.

Quantifying Quality - Addressing Assessment in Design Education
Paul Schultz, Architecture and Design Instructor

Workshop Description: Quantifying Quality addresses assessment in design education. The goal of the presentation is to first convey the importance of design education and its capacity to develop creative, responsible, critical thinkers who can bring ideas to reality and ultimately improve our world. The presentation will further show the difficulty in quantifying student achievement in design projects and processes, which are inherently qualitative. There will be a review of the design process and how there is an opportunity to assign numeric value to its various steps and their tasks. Finally the presentation will discuss the notion of assigning points to a particular project and how that affects student motivation and performance.

Biography: Paul was born and raised in Chicago. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Architectural Studies from University of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign, and his Masters degree in Architecture from the University of Oregon. Additionally, he studied furniture design abroad one year in Copenhagen, Denmark. He is a LEED accredited professional (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)

For nine years Paul worked at various architecture and design firms in Chicago, Illinois and Portland, Oregon, where he helped design exhibits, schools, restaurants, homes, libraries, retail space, zoos and aquariums. Additionally, he has gained valuable experience through his independent design and construction projects. Paul has a utility patent for the design of an environmentally friendly, alternative, folding holiday tree, and he is planning to patent more of his product designs. Currently, Paul is writing a children’s book and hopes to publish it in 2008.

For over two years, Paul has taught 12th grade architecture and design at C.H.A.D (The Charter High School for Architecture and Design) and he is an adjunct professor of architecture at Drexel University. He strongly believes that teaching students to discipline their imagination through the design process is a highly effective way to develop creative, responsible, critical thinkers who can bring ideas to reality and ultimately, make the world better.

Designathon - A 24 Hour Event Bringing Design to the Community by Students
Todd McFeely, KUCD Assistant Professor, Amanda Geisinger and Sara Van Kampen, KUCD Students

Workshop Description: Designathon is a 24-hour service-learning event sponsored by the Communication Design department at Kutztown University and the KUCD student chapter of AIGA. 50 students and 6 faculty members volunteered part of their spring recess to design and produce projects for 10 non-profit clients during the inaugral Designathon. Over 80 students and 7 faculty participated in the second Designathon serving 20 clients. This presentation will outline and discuss the process of developing Designathon, the challenges and the rewards of the event and how the experience affected the faculty, students and clients. The presentation will include examples of the final work and include an update on how Designathon changed and grew in its second year.

Biography: Todd McFeely is an Assistant Professor of Communication Design, specializing in Interactive Design, at Kutztown University. Todd received his BFA in Communication Design from Kutztown in 1993 and completed his MFA at Tyler School of Art in 2000. Prior to graduate school, he was a designer and then creative director at a small design/ad firm in suburban Philadelphia. He worked for clients that ranged from financial services firms such as Smith Barney and Travelers — now Citigroup — to retail stores such as Saks Fifth Avenue, Macy’s, Kohls and Boscov’s and large multinational corporations such as GE and Exxon. In addition to teaching, Todd actively freelances, engaging in a diverse range of projects, including assisting in the editing of a documentary film, package designs for a gourmet ice cream start-up, developing corporate identities, designing and producing websites and animating motion graphics.

Conference Information: The conference will be held on November 16th, 2007, with registration beginning at 8:00 am, conference fee is $60.00. Conference attendees are eligible for 6 ACT 48 HOURS. As more information becomes available I will post it on the web-site.

Persons with a disability, and who require accommodation, should notify the Disability Services Office two weeks prior to the event at 610-683-4108 or email, TDD number: 610-683-4499, in order to discuss accommodations. Every effort will be made to provide reasonable accommodations.

Conference History: Since 1939, the Department of Art Education and Crafts has offered provided a fall Art Education Conference designed to provide professional and community support for the support the region’s Art Educators and Kutztown alumni. Each year conference organizers develop the conference around a specific theme related to contemporary issues in the field. Past themes have included:

  • 1942 – Art on the Home Front
  • 1946 – Art Education for Successful Living
  • 1973 – Conception in the Visual Representations of thought
  • 1980 – A Sense of Craft
  • 1987 – Focus on Art and the Humanities
  • 2002 – The Narrative Thread: Art across Generations and Around the World


CURRENT LECTURES: See College Events.

CURRENT WORKSHOPS: See Sharadin Art Gallery


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