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TE401: Design Thinking for Social Impact, Fall 2019

TE 401: Design Thinking for Women's Health & Well-being, Fall 2019 and Spring 2020



Curriculum Development, Facilitation, Instruction ​



Senior Design Strategist

Siebel Center for Design

University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

How might we identify opportunities for  diversity-focused leadership pathways for women at Illinois?

My team at the Siebel Center for Design (SCD) was asked to take a human-centered approach to explore and develop a strategy for competitive applications to diversity-focused grant programs such as NSF ADVANCE. The project would assist the Office of the Vice-Chancellor of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in identifying key opportunity areas for refining future grant proposals by exploring and understanding the current landscape at UIUC and comparable institutions.

my role

I led a team with a fellow Design Strategist and 3 student interns in conducting human-centered design research with current, future, and previous faculty. From there, we reviewed and extracted meaning from our findings, synthesized insights, and presented opportunity areas to OVCDEI at the conclusion of the project.  The scope of this project all took place during social distancing measures for COVID-19. Our team led the entirety of our interviews and co-creation sessions over Zoom with faculty members and other key stakeholders. We used our insights from their processes of becoming leaders on campus and key insights from our user research to create a set of behavioral personas summarizing key stakeholders, outlining existing and emergent behaviors, and unmet needs.

Our team created journey maps and identified opportunity areas for design. We created a presentation with recommendations for concept strategy and development on how to implement these opportunity areas for design to envision a more supported journey to finding jobs at the university that provided structure around every aspect of a woman's identity. These recommendations build a more diverse university system and ultimately a competitive grant-winning strategy.

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