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Piloting a Post-graduate Fellowship in Design for Social Impact

The MID / Design for Social Impact program is very pleased to announce a new initiative this Spring semester for recent graduates. We are currently piloting and developing a post-graduate fellowship program which will provide exceptional graduates of the MID / Design for Social Impact program the opportunity to implement and measure the impact of their thesis work as applied within the Philadelphia community. Additionally, the Fellow will make a significant contribution to the graduate program by serving as a mentor to current students and promoting our work in the program to a broader audience.

Our inaugural fellow for the pilot phase this semester is Kelly Babcock (MID ‘13). As an entrepreneur and designer, she has quickly developed expertise in the methods and tools of a co-creative, co-design process. She honed these skills during her graduate thesis project, Truss: A Design and Education Partnership  (completed in collaboration with Alexandra Visconti), and has since been developing a design consultancy to bring an empathic, co-creative approach to the space of for-profit social ventures. Kelly has also been invaluable to us this Spring in her role as Project Manager and Co-Developer of our work with the FastFWD program.

Here’s what she writes regarding this fellowship opportunity:

The Design for Social Impact post graduate fellowship provides a valuable opportunity for me to develop my professional work. Through my design consultancy, EBEE design, I am building a new model for an executive education program that exposes the value of design in for-profit social impact work. An additional objective is to provide employment opportunities for design professionals seeking positions with for-profit social ventures. The provided space and support from UArts, along with their partnership with the FastFWD program, will allow me to prototype and test crucial aspects of the new model I am building. The mentorship from UArts faculty will provide valuable feedback to help to refine my concept. Beyond UArts’ walls, the relationships with key professionals and organizations will help me to build a strong, sustainable network to eventually scale my program. I am very grateful and excited to be the inaugural Design for Social Impact post-graduate fellow!

The inspiration for this initiative comes from our colleagues at MICA’s Social Design MA program, who launched a post-graduate fellowship in 2012 with great success. As we’ve gotten to know the faculty and students there over the past several months, we’ve been impressed by their rigorous approach to impactful social design, and the curriculum they are building to support this. We look forward to learning more with them about the challenges and opportunities that exist within this emergent field of social design.

Over the coming months, we will be working to further develop the post-graduate fellowship, which will include fund-raising efforts to secure resources for the next two years. Please contact MID / Design for Social Impact program director, Jeremy Beaudry (jbeaudry@uarts.edu, 215.717.6256), if you are interested in supporting this important initiative.

Piloting a Post-graduate Fellowship in Design for Social Impact

This entry was posted on Monday, March 3rd, 2014 at 2:50 pm by azahn123.