What I learned — professionally and personally — in Peace Corps Response program

I just completed my four-month assignment in the Peace Corps Response program in Port Vila, Vanuatu.  I took a leave of absence from my job, packed everything I own into a storage unit and headed out to a country I had never been to, all in the name of a new cross-cultural experience. The specific job title of my PCR position was web design and development consultant for the Ministry of Youth and Sports, a branch of Vanuatu government.


AIGA Raleigh Member Returns from Second Stint of Peace Corps Service in Vanuatu

As designers, our skill set comes with a lot of responsibility. We have the power to promote social change, we have the responsibility to represent our clients as they want to be, not just how we think they should be. Social justice is constantly affected by art and design. Design eliminates the need to speak a certain language to understand a message, and gives larger audiences, no matter their background, the opportunity to understand the message visually.


Benefits of design thinking for ICT4D

Information Communication Technology for Development (ICT4D) is the leverage of communication technologies in aim to bridge the digital divide. ICT4D is remarkable in it’s definition, meant to serve as the great equalizer, giving a voice to people across the world, despite geographical location or monetary status, creating communication by finding solutions for issues of accessibility and affordability.


Introducing UX, UI and interaction design at an ICT Camp for Girls in Vanuatu

Being in the right place at the right time has never been as applicable as when describing how I got involved with being able to teach at the SMARTSistas ICT Camp for Girls. This camp is an initiative that has been in the works since 2014, from a former volunteer who did most of the leg work, but her time was up in Vanuatu before the camp was fully planned and funded. Thankfully, Peace Corps people are the best and there were willing volunteers to pick up with the committee right where she left off. The SMARTSistas ICT Camp for Girls is part of a wider Peace Corps initiative, Let Girls Learn.


Why I am taking a leave of absence to volunteer in Vanuatu

I’ve been given the opportunity through the Peace Corps Response Program to live and work as a volunteer in Port Vila, Vanuatu for four months. I know you’re thinking, didn’t you already do the Peace Corps in Albania or something? Why yes, for two and a half years, I lived and worked in a small mountain town in northern Albania. But this is different.


6 things I learned during my first semester as an adjunct professor

I just wrapped up teaching my first semester of college at my alma mater. For the past 5 months, every Tuesday and Thursday morning I would stand in front of thirty first-year college students in the same classroom where I took freshman level math. When I first got offered this position, I soon realized there’s a lot of pressure being a college teacher, especially for someone who will be paying back grad school student loans for decades to come, the thought and burden of having to actually fail a student terrified me. I’ve also read the numerous recent articles about adjunct professors being one of the most undervalued assets in the field of academics, which also kind of terrified me.


Know any good designers?

In short, of course. The real question is: What type of designer do you need? Within the past couple of decades, graphic design has surpassed packaging and print design, pushing into web design, game design, app design, interaction design and user experience design. A good designer, just like any professional, is always evolving and adapting to the latest trends, and technology is essential for a growing designer. But even with the young life of web design, believe it or not, methods that used to be “best practice” now send a chill up your spine when requested by the client. (Yes Flash, I’m talking to you.)


Ten Things To Consider When Completing Your Interactive Media Degree

Last week we spoke to students completing their Master of Arts in Interactive Media. As graduates of the program, we shared our best tips for finding success when venturing out (or back) into the real world.


Peace Corps Albania: Project Design & Management Workshop

My counterpart and friend Endrit signed up for the PDM workshop held by the Peace Corps in Tirane. Our project plan is to renovate the basketball courts in the middle of town by having a clean-up day for the community, replacing the basketball goals and rims and painting the area, overall, just making the area safer and more easier to play on than it is now.


Peace Corps Albania: Gender & Development Conference

Last weekend was the Gender and Development conference in Durres. Over 50 kids from all over Albania were able to attend this conference due to a grant won by the G.A.D. from Vodafone. The conference was three days and included activities that brought awareness to gender issues in Albania, ways to talk to people about them, how to promote gender equality and fun activities to encompass all of these ideas.