AC4D: Applications for next year are open

Last fall I had the opportunity to give a guest lecture to the students in the first class at the Austin Center for Design (AC4D). Over the past few years, a number of innovative programs have sprung up and I’ve spoken at a number of them. What I enjoyed specifically about the AC4D was the feeling of being at a start-up and the slightly up-start attitude. I got the sense that students and faculty were united by someone, somewhere along the way, telling them that they couldn’t do this. And they are doing it. The school is focusing on applying design to social change, but the discussion is about the problem solving power of design – to understand, reframe, and innovate, rather than the an excess of earnestness or worrying. I suspect their point of view is maybe what you could call post-worldchanging…of course you want to address homelessness, let’s use the tools we’ve got to look at it.

Later this year I’ll be one of many IxDA peeps who volunteered to mentor the winning team of the Interaction ’11 Student Competition: AC4D’s Kat Davis and Ruby Ku (while I didn’t know they would be the winners when I volunteered, I couldn’t be more pleased).

If you or someone you know would be interested in attending AC4D next year, check out their site. They are now taking applications.


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