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ONU Design Professor To Present at International Conference

 Think. Know. Do.The graphic design program at Ohio Northern University will be represented in the international design community this month. Professor Brit Rowe from the department of art & design will be presenting his paper “Think. Know. Do. Design for the Common Good: Visual Advocacy in a High School Design Camp” at the 4th International Conference on Design Principles and Practices.

To be held February 13 –15 at University of Illinois-Chicago, the conference will address a range of critically important themes relating to design today. Conversations and dialogues will explore the meaning and purpose of ‘design’, as well as speak in grounded ways about the task of design and the use of designed artifacts and processes.

The conference is a cross-disciplinary forum which brings together researchers, teachers and practitioners to discuss the nature and future of design. The resulting conversations weave between the theoretical and the empirical, research and application, market pragmatics and social idealism.

In professional and disciplinary terms, the conference traverses a broad sweep to construct a trans-disciplinary dialogue which encompasses the perspectives and practices of anthropology, architecture, art, artificial intelligence, business, cognitive science, communication studies, computer science, cultural studies, design studies, education, e-learning, engineering, ergonomics, fashion, graphic design, history, information systems, industrial design, industrial engineering, instructional design, interior design, interaction design, interface design, journalism, landscape architecture, law, linguistics and semiotics, management, media and entertainment, psychology, sociology, software engineering, technical communication, telecommunications, urban planning and visual design.

“Design: Think. Know. Do.,” part of the University’s Summer Honors Institute Program at Ohio Northern University, facilitates the introduction of basic methods, processes, language and underlying theory of design. The course also provides general information about the purpose, practice and educational requirements for many major design fields including architecture, interior design, landscape architecture, industrial design and visual communication design.

The main goal of the week-long course is to nurture the ability of high school students in gifted and talented programs from Ohio. Students are encouraged to think about subjects in more abstract and complex ways. In the design course, an interdisciplinary design assignment demonstrates that design belongs not only in the art studio, but in and among all disciplines. Students are encouraged to think about professional experience, local engagement in a small community, social responsibility and community awareness through design practice.

Prof. Rowe is associate professor and chair of the department of art & design. He joined the Ohio Northern University faculty in 1999 after receiving his BFA degree from Ohio Northern and the MFA degree in graphic design from the University of Michigan. He is a member of AIGA/The Professional Association for Design, the University and College Designers Association, Kappa Pi, Theta Chi, Order of Omega and Omicron Delta Kappa. He has considerable experience as a graphic designer, has exhibited regionally and has worked for clients such as Norwich University, the United Way, and many others.

He also has collaborated with design students for local organizations such as the Ada Public Library, the Village of Ada, Restore Community Center, the Allen East Community Center and ONU. Since 2006, he has presented at national design educators’ conferences, was inducted into Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers, and was included in Creative for a Cause, a social responsibility resource for graphic design educators. Also during that time, he served as an external program consultant and a juror for various regional competitions.

Ohio Northern offers both the Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees with majors in advertising design, art education, graphic design and studio arts. The department of A&D holds memberships in national organizations such as the National Art Education Association, College Art Association, Foundations in Art: Theory and Education and the National Council on Education of Ceramic Arts. The department is recognized in the second edition of “Creative Colleges: A Guide for Student Actors, Artists, Dancers, Musicians and Writers” as one of the best creative programs nationwide. For additional information about the department of art & design or the University’s 2009-10 Arts Exhibition Season, contact the department at 419.772.2160.

image: Prof. Rowe with students conducting research during last year’s design camp.