It is with deep admiration and the highest regard that I write to mark the fifteenth anniversary of a most extraordinary initiative – Designmatters. The brilliance of this program is well documented and the evidence of its significance is clear from the many students, faculty, staff and communities around the world that have benefited from its influence and reach. Designmatters has blazed the trail for social impact design curricula in colleges across the country. It has led the way and has set the standard for the extraordinary things that can transpire when one applies the creative mind to world problems. I can’t imagine a more meaningful experience for our students and for the communities they serve through their work.
ArtCenter has always prided itself on its external partnerships and on the integration of real-world industry challenge into its curricular offerings. It has been a hallmark of the ArtCenter experience for decades. Countless partners can regale us with stories of the brilliant work of our students over the years. Designmatters leverages that partnership model but lifts it out of commerce and industry and reframes it within the context of social need. The investigation, the research, the deep inquiry happens not from a privileged perch in Pasadena, but within the communities themselves, with real people and their real immediate problems.
Today there is a clear recognition, even a clamoring, for what the creative mind can bring to human experience. Our students are discovering everyday the central importance of their work and the enormous need they are meeting on a global scale. Designmatters was built on a clear understanding of the power of artists and designers in making the world a better place and of the limitless educational opportunities that result from the process.
One can only stand in awe of Mariana Amatullo and her team for all that has been achieved in fifteen years and for the gift of Designmatters to ArtCenter and to the world. I congratulate them warmly and hold the deepest gratitude for their exceptional work.
Lorne M. Buchman
Help us celebrate 15 Years of Designmatters by using the hashtag #DM15Yrs
Catch up on the entire campaign at designmattersatartcenter.org/category/dm15
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