Empathy-building: collecting user data, building personas, user testing. Storytelling: videography, pitching. Conceptual Design: problem-framing, ideation, form-giving, brainstorming.
Positioning: Competitive analysis, pricing. Financials: Profit and loss statements, budgeting, business plans. Marketing: Networking, advertising, promotion
Prototyping: building to answer questions, physical, electronic, UX. Fabrication: Shop experience, code-writing. Versioning: Right-sizing, letting go, iteration.
Leadership: having hard conversations, performance management. Project management: Goal-setting, planning work. Creative confidence: open mindset, emotional learning.
Context: history of design, appreciation of design perspectives. Respect: ethics, human subject procedures. Sustainability: impact of projects, system-level view.
Analysis: quantitative data analysis, human subject experiment designDepth: Expert knowledge in trackResearch: literature review, hypothesis forming and testing.
The Loft is the space reserved on campus for the Master’s students in the Design Impact Program. Officially know on campus maps as Building 610, the Loft is adjacent to the Product Realization Lab and centrally located on campus near the Tressider Student Union, at the corner of Duena and Santa Teresa Streets. This special space fosters a culture of creativity and exploration that is central to our program. The Loft is so named because the original space was “borrowed” from the attic of the old ME Foundry building.
The rogue interpretation of that single word is made in an assortment of unique ways by its inhabitants, the Loftees. Each given a cubby-hole of creativity, Loftees inquire into the nature of materials and light, build spaceships, endeavor into experimental living, place electronics where none had gone before, cultivate “the Force,” and far more! An allergy to normalcy and an instinctual, life-long mistrust of the beaten path has led creative folks to this small building for, now, many generations. Those generations who come back to teach and share what they learn in the broad world round out the Loft as truly a meeting house for a band of wildly differently yet empathetic artisans.
In the Loft, there is no “program” in design, but rather an open space for it. Bill Burnett, elder Loftee and current Captain of the SS Loft, often says “every band tours, but the real music is written back in the basement or garage, where the musicians are free to experiment.” The Loft is where we experiment, where we put our ears to the tracks. It is our garage, it is our studio, it is our home.