Category Archives: Success Stories

Design, Bared

Posters in Mark's Cafe
Posters in Mark’s Cafe

Tuesday’s workshop on graphic design with Marjan Gartland and William Hodgson was such a treat! I’m sure you have seen many of Marjan’s wonderful designs all over campus. I see them every day on crowded boards such as the one pictured here at Mark’s Cafe in Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center competing for the attention of the Penn campus.

Marjan is the Visual Project Manager on the University Life Administration Team in the Division of the Vice Provost for University Life (VPUL). She helps create beautiful graphics for many purposes and audiences, serving the many departments in that division including the cultural resource centers and campus safety.

She brought dozens of posters to show us, and we enjoyed looking at them displayed on the walls of the Collaborative Classroom. Marjan and William shared their insider tips-and-tricks with us, and Marjan did a live demo of creating a graphic using PhotoShop and Illustrator. We talked about using tablets like our new Cintiq and tools like InDesign and Kuler.

Often, when I see a powerful poster, I have little understanding of how it came to be. What I found most helpful about the workshop was watching a graphic take shape one step at a time, one tool at a time. Marjan started with a photo of a face and created a complex graphic in minutes!

I am looking forward to facilitating an online workshop in October with William on logo design and I hope you will join us.

Where Are They Now? Interview with former WIC staffer turned illustrator, Sarah Jacoby

jacoby photo

© Sarah Jacoby 2015

Hello, PennWIC readers! My name is Elizabeth Crowder and I’m a new(ish) graduate intern at the Weigle Information Commons. Our inaugural post in the “Where Are They Now?” blog series features former Vitale Digital Media Lab consultant (2007-2011) Sarah Jacoby who resides in Brooklyn, NY. She currently works as a production designer with the creative team at Tinybop, an educational children’s app and media company. You might be wondering what a production designer does. According to Jacoby, her job as a production designer involves anything from creating art for Tinybop’s apps to helping prepare art for the apps as well as myriad miscellaneous design-oriented things.

In addition to her work at Tinybop, Jacoby works as a freelance illustrator and designer. Current exciting projects include working on a children’s book for a UK publisher and a line of wedding invitations for friends. She has also contributed to books about illustration, shown art internationally and throughout the United States, published with folks like The New York Times, and won awards in fancy places.


© Sarah Jacoby 2015

Sarah was kind enough to take time out of her busy schedule to discuss how she landed her job as a production designer and all the hard work that went into propelling her from a lab consultant at the Vitale Digital Media Lab to where she is today. Continue reading Where Are They Now? Interview with former WIC staffer turned illustrator, Sarah Jacoby

Top 12 Success Stories at WIC

Here at WIC we love seeing the ways in which students and faculty use our resources to succeed, and we jump at the opportunity to help with new projects.collaborate and succeed Our blog highlights many of the successes seen around WIC, and now we have a page on the Commons website dedicated to twelve of those most popular stories.

Check out Success Stories for featured articles!

Interview with Audrey Harnagel

 smile-1Audrey Harnagel, rising Penn senior, recently completed the Hoesley Digital Literacy Fellows Program.
As we enter summer, we would like to acknowledge some of the incredible collaborations we’ve had with students this year. Today we’re delving into the work of Audrey Harnegel, a rising senior at Penn, who works in multiple disciplines and was a fellow in this year’s Hoesley Digital Literacy program. This program is designed for students who may not be familiar with technology topics such as Graphic Design and Visual Literacy, Web Design, Spreadsheets and Excel. The library staff who collaborate with students in this program focus on building confidence, providing learning strategies, and encouraging creative exploration of software and technologies commonly used in the workplace. Comfort and confidence with, and a strong foundation in technology skills can provide a valuable edge in many job and internship searches. Audrey was kind enough to answer a few questions about her experiences with Hoesley program activities below:

Exam vs. Nobel chat?

Students from Chem 251 class
Eric Shiuey and Evan Selzer

Should I take my organic chemistry exam or accept an invitation for coffee with a Nobel Prize winning scientist?  Eric Shiuey C’16 and Evan Selzer C’16 hesitated. Fortunately, their professor Jeffery Saven set them straight. Exam rescheduled!

The two students  set off for a chat at the Inn at Penn with Dr. Stanley Prusiner, winner of the 1997 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.

A few weeks earlier, Eric and Evan had created a video for the course CHEM 251, Principles of Biological Chemistry. They had pored over journal articles on prions, a new class of pathogens discovered by Dr. Prusiner. As part of the assignment, students share links to their videos with the scientists whose work is referenced. Eric and Evan wrote to six scientists and four responded with feedback. One email brought a surprise! An invitation to meet with Dr. Prusiner when he visited Penn this April as part of the Year of Health activities.

Vickie Karasic and I met recently with Eric, Evan and Jeff to get the scoop.. Continue reading Exam vs. Nobel chat?

CALICO Monograph Launch Event

CALICOOver the past several years, WIC staff have worked closely with the Penn Language Center to assist language educators with using technology for teaching and learning. Each year, we conduct custom workshops based on topics that PLC folks have requested. We also assist educators in creating assignments and teaching students technology tools in order to complete successful digitally-mediated projects.  Language classes have used screen videos, PowerPoint, iMovie, Prezi, audience response tools, Skype, Canvas, and various other tools to create digital projects. In the video below, Mélanie Péron of the French and Francophone Studies Department discusses her use of technology in the classroom, how it has developed over the past several years, and her use of the Commons in the process.

This year, we interviewed several language faculty members to write a chapter for the 2015 volume of the CALICO Monograph Book Series, Researching Language Learner Interaction Online: From Social Media to MOOCs. Our chapter, “Video Creation Tools for Language Learning: Lessons Learned,” examines – through course observations, faculty interviews, and student surveys – student and faculty perceptions of the usefulness of video tools and the role of the library in technology support. The volume as a whole, edited by Ed Dixon of the Penn Language Center and Michael Thomas of the University of Central Lancashire, focuses on language learning in the digitally-mediated environment.  Technology tools mentioned in the monograph complement the PLC-sponsored May workshops at WIC.  We plan to Skype with several authors and have a lively conversation about language learning in the digital environment. Many articles were reviewed by experts and faculty at Penn: Jacqueline Dougherty, David James, Helen McFie Simone, Maria Paredes Fernández, Jay Treat, and Lillyrose Veneziano Broccia.

We hope you’ll join us on May 21 from noon to 1:30pm in the Collaborative Classroom for the celebration! Lunch will be provided! Please click here to register.

PennWIC Blog Turns 4!

Hard to believe it’s been 4 years! To celebrate, we’ve made an infographic detailing our blog’s meteoric rise in popularity and highlighting some blog statistics we found interesting. For instance, we were delighted to learn that our most popular posts are increasingly about undergrad projects. We built this graphic using Adobe Illustrator, and styled it after a modern variant of the Penn colors and modal user interface schemes.PennWIC-Blog-Infographic

Continue reading PennWIC Blog Turns 4!