Our Mission

Learning, understanding, and sharing the impact of design for positive social change.


How It Works

Throughout the semester two to three Detroit Metro-area non-profit organizations will present their specific needs, project scope and budget to the student designers. Students will be paired in teams to create design concepts for the non-profit client. Through research, process-based making, and critique, student teams will be prepared to pitch their concepts to the client in professional presentations. Clients will then choose the team with the most appropriate solution for their brief. "Winning" teams will continue to work with the non-profit under the supervision of the instructor. Projects will be brought to fruition with students providing finished industry-standard design files. Clients will be responsible for all payment to vendors, and the student will not be responsible for any financial transactions. In the case of a print-based deliverable, the non-profit will also provide finished copies to the student.


Students Gain:

Nonprofits Gain:

  • Engagement with non-profit organizations and connecting with their community

  • Enhancement in professionalism in research, design, presentation and feedback

  • Enhancement in confidence and understanding about the application of their skillsets in the “real world”, through exposure to clients, meetings and vendors

  • Creation of portfolio-worthy pieces of design with the opportunity to see them finalized to industry standards 

  • Quality graphic design at the cost of production
  • New design-related insights and strategies based on the needs of their organization
  • Engagement, dialogue and a relationship with the student community
  • Fulfillment forming socially aware future design professionals
  • Seeing the impact of effective graphic design within their organization

Participating Non-Profits Will Be Required to Provide:

  • Project brief with specific and clear needs, goals and deliverables
  • Timeline
  • Availability for two Tuesday morning meetings with students during the timeline
    •  Introduction of the project brief
    •  Final presentation by students 
  • Budget to produce the final deliverable(s) 
  • Appointed representative(s) from the non-profit organization to act as a client contact