Designing for Social Good

Visual communication design director reflects on Abbey Pitzer’s path to the White House.
Abbey's Farm to Fridge project
Abbey Pitzer's Farm to Fridge Mobile Market project empowered residents living with diabetes in rural Pennsylvania to improve their quality of life.

One of the most rewarding aspects of teaching is watching our students make their mark on the world as designers. It’s incredible to take stock of everyone’s success and accomplishments that have passed through our program.

Only a few short years ago, Abbey Pitzer was in our Hayward Hall studios, sorting Post-it Notes with peers and mocking-up projects for final reviews. It’s awesome to know these experiences helped prepare her to join the Biden campaign and now the Biden administration.

Thinking of Abbey’s projects, they always centered around design for social good. She amazed us with her senior capstone project Seedling, an AR experience to enhance a child’s inpatient/outpatient experience at a hospital or doctor’s office by combining the benefits of nature with the developmental benefits of play.

She worked alongside two classmates to create Farm to Fridge, a system to help empower residents living with diabetes in rural Pennsylvania to improve their quality of life by educating them about healthy eating habits, collaborating with local farmers and building community.

Abbey even used design as a way to tackle political issues like gun control legislation with a game board she designed called Oh Shoot! The game presents the controversial topic from an objective viewpoint so players can discover how the United States and other countries around the world handle gun ownership.

While at Jefferson, Abbey was a leader as co-president of the AIGA student group, a friend and resource to everyone, and a thoughtful and empathetic designer. We’re incredibly proud of Abbey and very excited to watch her career thrive! We’ll tell stories of, “We knew her when …”

Beth Shirrell is the director of Jefferson’s visual communication design program.

READ MORE: Visual Communication Design Alumna Abbey Pitzer Joins Biden’s Office of Digital Strategy Team

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Design and Style