Impact! 2011 Launches Monday, July 11

An enthusiastic group of students from around the world are converging on New York CIty to explore how to apply design thinking – the combination of unleashed creativity and executable actions – to pressing social problems. Along with students from the US, participants from as far away as Australia, Brazil, Mexico and Lebanon, represent a variety of disciplines and range in experience from graduate level to seasoned professionals.

Participants in the program include: Liz Cook, Ana Perez Gil, Tania Jimenez, Hala Malak, Bess McLaughlin, Zennie McLoughin, Jacqueline Minkler, Nathalia Nogueria, Jen Odegaard, Payal Patel, Etienne Pham, Mollie Ruskin and Chris Seabrooks

The six week program at the School of Visual Arts will run on two parallel tracks; the first will educate students on how to conceive and execute their own projects for social change with an emphasis on funding.  Along with a personal project, students will participate in the development of a team project around the theme of economic and community development.

The program was co-founded in 2010 by Steven Heller, design historian, author and critic and Mark Randall principal of Worldstudio. Randall serves as the program chair, the noted faculty includes: Michael Blakney, consultant, Lee Davis, NESsT; Mara Einstein, author and educator; Martin Kace, Empax; Bob McKinnon, YellowBrickRoad; Laetitia Wolff, FutureFlair and desigNYC; and Andréa Pellegrino, Worldstudio.

Over the six week intensive, students will also participate in a series of lectures and field trips with leaders in the areas of design and social change.

Through a partnership with desigNYC and the NYC Department of Small Business Services the participants will be collaborating on the team projects with a variety of New York City neighborhood organizations.

BROOKLYN:  Revitalization & Development Southwest Brooklyn IDC

MANHATTAN:  Lower East Side Business Improvement District

QUEENS:  East River Development Alliance

STATEN ISLAND:  Northfield Community LDC

Follow the exploits of the students over the next six weeks right here on the Impact! Blog or on Twitter at ImpactDesign.