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We are very excited to share that this year, we have accepted EIGHT new studios to the DFA Network! These students have worked incredibly hard to build a community, amplify human centered design, conduct a one-month project, and get their leadership team geared up to hit the ground running in fall 2015 to create local and social change.

Learn about the school below in their own words and project videos!

University of Alabama

Notably a large research university positioned in the heart of the South, the University of Alabama exists as a melting pot of student backgrounds, interests, and perspectives. Through Design for America at UA, we hope to cultivate this diversity into a productive outlet for community engagement. In closing the incessant gap between our campus and the surrounding Tuscaloosa community, we plan to serve as a facilitator of meaningful relationships. This approach does not only allow students to work together in a uniquely collaborative environment, but to also make critical strides in improving our local dynamic.

University of Alabama tackles literacy.

UT Austin

UT Austin’s motto is “what starts here changes the world”. What better way to change the world than with a group of fellow Longhorns, each with a unique perspective on how best to solve a problem? We are a community of game-changers and innovators committed to investigating some of the toughest problems facing our world.We view our location in Austin as an opportunity to engage with new activities, ideas, and innovative developments. With our combined interests and skill sets, we are well connected to diverse organizations on campus and the city, partnering with them to solve challenges. As our chapter grows, DFA at UT Austin will establish itself as a communal creative resource for our school and city.

UT Austin tackles campus navigation for the blind. 

University of Cincinnati

While The University of Cincinnati is often perceived as the typical state school, our top-ranked design programs, emphasis on cooperative education, and experiential learning opportunities, all set in an ever-changing city environment, are what set us apart. There is a definite passion among UC students to improve our community. The honors program and many of the colleges encourage community outreach and involvement, and we already have a multiple organizations geared towards sustainability, public health, and human-centered design. Our DFA team at UC consists of a hard working group of students who were not satisfied with the status quo and wanted to do even more, to create tangible and positive impacts in our community.

University of Cincinnati tackles community building. 

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New York University
The New York University DFA Studio was created based on our passion and belief that we could use human-centered design to tackle social issues locally and develop solutions that have a social impact locally and globally. Although having on board students from different nationalities and with a range of academic interests, the NYU team has held united by the idea that college students working together can promote positive changes. As a DFA Studio, we are part of an inspiring movement, which has the vision of tackling America’s most daunting issues using the college students’ abilities at the local level.

NYU tackles the challenge of safety on campus for women.

University of North Carolina

UNC-Chapel Hill has created a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship that can be seen across the various academic departments. Additionally, the vast majority of students are driven to have an impact on their community in one way or another. They join clubs, volunteer, and run for student government in order to leave our tight-knit community a little better off than when they first arrived for orientation. Design for America at UNC combines these aspects of entrepreneurship and social impact into a single organization that helps students grow as leaders and community members.

UNC tackles campus safety. 

Notre Dame

The Notre Dame DFA studio stemmed from a 3 year search for a way to help Notre Dame students learn human centered design outside of the classroom. Notre Dame is a university committed to committed to generating wide-scale social impact across disciplines. Our studio members saw the formation of a DFA studio as the perfect way to unite these student desires with the university’s missions. We envision our DFA studio becoming a leader in Notre Dame’s push to promote innovative thinking in its students. We see our studio becoming a marquee example of the power and importance of interdisciplinary collaboration within our community.

Notre Dame tackles food waste.

UC San Diego

Our DFA studio is at the forefront of the budding design culture at UCSD. With a vast campus in want of an established design major, UCSD lacked the opportunity for students to join their peers in pursuit of their design interests. We saw this as a great chance to create a DFA studio linking students across all academic disciplines in a creative effort to shape up our world. We are united not only by our remarkable wit, humor, and charm, but also by our passion for making a difference in our community.

UCSD tackle food waste. 

University of Southern California

Positioned in South LA, our studio sits at the intersection of meaningful resources and community needs. From homelessness to food access to water conservation, Los Angeles is notorious for some of the most wicked challenges of our generation. As a community of problem-solvers, artists, and big thinkers, we aspire to imagine and create a better Los Angeles. We believe in learning by doing. The University of Southern California is brimming with changemaker culture and entrepreneurial spirit. From business to fine arts to engineering to environmental science, students across disciplines are itching to build, to create, and to apply their skills to something meaningful.

USC tackles community building. 

Stay tuned to see what all these new studios do as they are destined for great things!