Come join us in Seattle!!

As part of the 2022 AIGA National Conference in Seattle, Washington, the DEC will host the SURFACE mini-conference on Thursday, October 20th, 2022 from 8:00 am – 1:00 pm (PST).

SURFACE will feature peer-reviewed papers, panels, workshops, posters, and other work from design educators, graduate students, and others. We are accepting submissions from the design education community until July 15th, and will announce our schedule in early August.

More information and registration details can be found on the conference website:


Both a noun and a verb, this word has two meanings that are deeply connected to design. Surface can be a way to describe or refer to the layered planes of an object, environment, or idea – the skin, the screen, the shell, the boundary, the face, a layer. Creators are well aware of the importance of the surface of/within things, and it often serves as a gatekeeper to deeper ideas.  The word surface can also refer to the act of rising up or emerging – an object, statement, or idea floating to the top, being revealed, coming to light.

As we navigate the chaos of our current context, and consider the ways design and design education have grown and changed over the last decade, we wonder what comes next? What have we learned? What have we tried? What is already in motion but needs more momentum? Where are we going? What kind of design future do we want to build? What lies beneath the surface, and what is yet to emerge?


8:00-8:30 am

8:30-9:15 am

9:20-10:25 am

Registration and Breakfast in the Lobby

General Session in Main Auditorium

Main Auditorium

Panel: Intercultural perspectives in design process. Unforeseen challenges and opportunities
Chair: Samira ShiriDevich
Panelists: Gilberto Corona, Shaza Jendi, Marjan Khatibi, Alejandra Silva Uliarte

Room 611

Paper: Towards the design of a cross-cultural museum experience for all visitors: Findings from a community-engaged transdisciplinary design education research project
Presenter: Audrey G Bennett and Nicholas La Marca

Paper: Design obsolescence: Community-activated design and designing for micro-communities
Presenter: Clinton Carlson

Paper: Sign, Sign, Everywhere a Sign: The Typography and Design of Local Political Yard Signs
Presenter: Shannon Zenner

Room 612

Paper: The Crooked Beat: Building Beloved Community through Disability Justice and Punk Rock
Presenter: Andrea Cardinal

Paper: ENTORCHA: a decolonized community archive from the territory of Puerto Rico
Presenter: María de Mater O’Neill

Paper: Co-designing for equitable futures: a horizontal methodology
Presenter: Maria Rogal

Room 603

Paper: Design as shared language: using collaborative design to bridge cultural differences
Presenter: Amrita Datta

Paper: Towards a New Design Commons
Paper: Kristian Bjornard

Paper: The Design Outside Studio
Presenter: Jeremy Shellhorn

Room 604

Workshop: Rethinking the CV and Faculty Assessment
Presenter: Aaron Ganci

10:30-11:35 am

Main Auditorium

Panel: Educate / Interrogate / Augment: The Critical Intersection of A.I. and Design Practice
Chair: Helen Armstrong
Panelists: Anastasia Raina, Lia Coleman, Syashi Gupta

Room 611

Presentation: Using the People’s Graphic Design Archive and Design Teaching Resource in the Classroom
Presenters: Louise Sandhaus, Annabelle Gould

Room 612

Paper: Towards Ethical Reflective Practice and Radical Acceptance in Design Practice, Research, and Education
Presenters: Zack Tucker

Paper: Thinking what we’re doing: introducing a design ethics course
Presenter: Maurice Meilleur

Paper: From vaccine hesitancy to vaccine confidence: addressing Covid-19 vaccination hesitancy through conversation cards and vaccine ambassadors
Presenter: Penina Acayo Laker

Room 603

Paper: For an Inclusive Graphic Design History: A Model for a Plural Pedagogy
Presenter: Kristen Coogan

Paper: Assessing Beginning Design Students’ Storytelling and Visual Presentation Skills Through a Six-Dimension Design Communication Rubric
Presenter: Ellen Christensen, Omar Sosa-Tzec

Paper: Digging Deep: Teaching Writing + Design Composition
Presenter: Warren Lehrer

Room 604

Workshop: Beyond Buzzwords: Acting on our Values in Design Education
Presenters: Marty Maxwell Lane, Gaby Hernández, Ali Place, Rebecca Tegtmeyer

11:40 am – 12:45 pm

Main Auditorium

Panel: Put Grind Culture to Bed: Pedagogical Strategies for Happier, Healthier Design Students
Chair: Katherine “Kay Leigh” Farley
Panelists: Meena Khalili, Erica Holeman, Ryan Gibboney

Room 611

Graduate Student Presentations

Paper: Case Study The Bridge
Presenter: Flory Sanabria

Paper: Resurfacing Spaces to Benefit Mental Health and Create Community
Presenter: Neakail C Tolbert

Paper: Visual Communication Strategies for Confronting Systems of Power & Privilege: Design Campaign Case Study
Presenter: Lee Turner

Paper: Discover new empathy in death-care design
Presenter: Jialun Wang

Paper: Increasing BIPOC Student Interest in Visual Communication Through Graffiti and Street Art
Presenter: Eric R. Venegas

Paper: Finding My Fat, Queer Voice: Experimenting with Designed Autoethnography to Realize Reflexive Expertise in my Experiences and Understand My Identity
Presenter: Brooke Hull

Room 612

Paper: More than surface design: Integrating strategy, entrepreneurship, and interdisciplinary collaboration for user experience design curriculum
Presenter: Douglas Thomas

Paper: Rise of The Typographic Being
Presenter: Jason Murdock

Paper: Typographic relief: Supporting Student Well-being Through Trauma-informed Practices
Presenter: Denielle Emans

Room 603

Paper: Beyond one-size-fits-all: Designing for the emotional state of the user
Presenter: Rachael Paine

Paper: Connecting Arab Immigrant Mothers and public school teachers through a community building initiative
Presenter: Shaza Jendi

Paper: Resurfacing: Tiles of Our Times
Presenter: Steven McCarthy

Room 604

Workshop: Racism Untaught Workshop
Presenters: Terresa Moses, Lisa Elzey Mercer

12:45-2:00 pm

2:00 pm

Lunch on your own

General Session for AIGA National Conference

Surface Planning Team

Victor Davila, Surface Conference Co-Chair
Katie Krcmarik, Surface Conference Co-Chair
Vinicius Lima, Surface Branding Designer
Alberto Rigau, DEC Co-Chair
Liese Zahabi, Surface Peer Review Coordinator and DEC Co-Chair