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DSI Students Win Big at DC Competition

DSI / Social Design

MFA Design for
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136 W 21st St,
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(212) 592–2205

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Creative Leadership

Stephen Morrison, ’18, came to DSI with all the right stuff: a love of working with multidisciplinary teams and a desire to use his talent and energy to help other people. While in school, he reimagined an Indian organization that teaches young school children to be entrepreneurs, partnered on a thesis project that helps cancer survivors survive life after cancer, won the Design Impact Group at Dalberg’s Fellowship, then got a job there almost the moment he graduated. He’s a creative leader in the process of taking off: traveling the world, and contributing to it everywhere he goes.


Sara Cornish, ’14, came to DSI from a career in advertising, because she wanted it all to mean something. She made the most of her opportunities, working while in school at the UN Global Pulse and facilitating the world’s most extraordinary data scientists, then joining Games for Change, led by DSI faculty Asi Burak. There, she was discovered by Microsoft, and now she’s living in Seattle, leading marketing for the launch of Minecraft Education. Now she’s making what she mastered mean something for students and teachers all over the world, with a way to make learning more student centered.


Manolo Ampudia, ’16, came to DSI as an industrial designer, amplified the effectiveness of placemaking in Brownsville, used his thesis project to inspire people to be more active citizens, and is now home in Mexico City building capacity at the Uncommon creative consultancy for powerful social design. The world doesn’t have to wait for Manolo any more.


Communication Design Class is one of the places DSI students develop the skills and agency to take on real world challenges. Here, on assignment in the rainforest of Ecuador, Sophia Granefelt-Lauren, ’18, and Alejandro Cercas, ’18, immerse in the world of their client Neblina Forest, an ecotourist company that helps local farmers maintain their land.

Every year, students in their first year at DSI learn to use communication design to help mission-based organizations achieve their visions. Clients have ranged from the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative to the L’Oreal Corporation. This spring, clients will include the Museum of Design Atlanta; The Giving Kitchen, an organization helping restaurant workers maintain security; Ignite, helping women run for office; and Project Liberation, an organization supporting formerly-incarcerated women.Skills include mastering language to lead change, storytelling, critical thinking and writing, creative development and presentations.


Gina Kim, ’15, entered DSI as an Illustrator, won a DCFemTech award, helped young people in the autism spectrum with her thesis project, worked at the VA helping veterans get the benefits they deserve, and has just taken a new job at the American Civil Liberties Union as a product designer. Gina knows how to make a lot of good trouble.

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136 W 21st St,
5th Fl.
New York, NY 10011
(212) 592–2205

SUBSCRIBE