work in progress review


The Graphic Design Faculty of Ferris State University requested my team member and I plan the second annual program critique event. After reviewing the outcome of last year’s critique, the faculty noticed a communication issue between our two program events. This year it was our job to plan the event and strengthen the event communication.


The mission for the critique event is to generate student and program feedback through a specific group of design professionals that the program considers an advisory board. This feedback will be recorded and used for reflection analysis.and business strategy.


design professors

  • Program feedback
  • Connections with professionals
  • Extension: Boost program perception to increase enrollment

dean nicol | college of business

  • Benefits to the College of Business
  • Extension: Boost program perception to increase enrollment

senior class

  • Feedback on our work
  • Connections with professionals
  • Practice before Senior Review


user research

We conducted interviews with some of the top design professionals such as John O'Neill, Sharon Olenenixzak, and Kevin Budelmann to compile our users wants, needs, and motivations.


save the date email

To strengthen the communication of the purpose of this event “Portfolio” was crossed out and work in progress was stuck on top. We utilized the materials that we use every day during the design process.


Event invitations were mailed out with the RSVP information. The white side is a high gloss paper to mimic the material of a white-board, the neon green side to resemble highlighters. Hand mailed invitations add a personal touch and importance to the event. All of the mailers were assembled by my fellow classmates and myself in my basement. The mailers were sent in an envelope that were designed to resemble interdepartmental mail, something design professionals are familiar with in their daily process.


The website for the event included a detailed itinerary to clearly communicate the platform of the event. Guests RSVP through typeform using the website.


event signage

On the Start Garden entrance doors we hung four window clings. We designed the window clings to resemble sticky notes and they flapped in the wind.


The juniors helped run the event, they did everything from greet guests, manage the timed rotations, and take photography.

name tags

Students wore “Still in Progress” name tags during the event. I designed the "Still in Progress" typography to appear unfinished to reflect the work in progress purpose of the event.

table tents

The professionals were given their own table and the seniors rotated around. This gave the professionals a sense of prestige and honor. To provide flexability we designed the table tents to be hand written in case a guest who didn’t rsvp arrived.

engagement: speed round

The first portion of the event was a rapid critique round. Students sat with ve professionals for 10 minutes each and gain feedback on their projects.

mark it up

Students made connections with design professionals, they passed out résumés and exchanged business cards.


Professionals and students marked on their portfolios using pens/pencils and sticky notes to quickly record feedback.

professor sit-downs

Within our 10 minute rotations professors sat down with the professionals to gain immediate feedback.


Professionals from multiple different companies joined the Work in Progress review providing different opinions.

engagement: free-form

For the following hour professionals were able to meet with students they haven’t spoken with yet and revisit students they wanted more time with. At this time they may also grab a snack, drink, and ll out survey questions.

environmental graphic

During the free-form period professionals were invited to provide more general feedback with an adhesive wall graphic.

food & drinks

During the event we provided Founders beer, water, la croix, and cheese/meat trays courtesy of Aperitivo.


clipboard survey

At the end of the event every professional lled out a survey, a lot of valuable feedback was collected.


follow up email

After the event all guests recieved an email thanking them for coming. The email also gave guests one last opportunity to provide us with their final thoughts.



  • Format of professionals staying stationary worked well but should swap positions after the first hour.
  • Move the event ot February, the date was too close to spring break.
  • Tell your project as a story.
  • Project brand standards should be in the back of your books, not intro.
  • The day-of reminder email was appreciated.
  • Professionals enjoyed seeing our process boards.
  • Clipboard surveys were successful, every professional filled one out.


To help raise funds the two design teams came together to present to the Dean of the College of Business. We were 250% more successful this year at raising money than the past years group.