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Jun 25, 2020

Design Educator Panel: How do we teach true resilience in young designers?

Diana Varma RGD, Hyein Lee RGD, Greg Dubeau RGD, and Bianca DiPietro RGD

About this video


Our panel discusses how to balance the need to deliver crafted design content with the need to build resilient and resourceful designers for an ever-changing industry. The second in a series that aims to help educators connect, share and thrive off each other in the design and education space. This series offers tips, dialogue, critical thought and a sense of community around design education.Each webinar tackles a different topic in design academia.The webinar will be structured in the following format: The moderator will start with questions for each of the panelists, then we move to an open forum and finally take questions from the audience. The webinar will be about 1 hour in length.

Topics covered:
- What does modern-day resiliency look like?
- How do employers know they are getting a flexible, adaptable designer who can change and mold with the times?
- Defining why we need resilient designers. Why does this matter just as much as their portfolio?
- How do we prepare designers for complete shifts in the working experience and changes in delivery and content?
- How do we both deliver and challenge the students to be resourceful and self sufficient?

Moderated by Bianca DiPietro RGD


Gail Anderson

Designer, writer and educator Gail Anderson is the chair of BFA Design and BFA Advertising at the School of Visual Arts and the creative director at Visual Arts Press at SVA. Anderson serves on the Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee for the United States Postal Service and the advisory board for Poster House, the New York City poster museum. She is the recipient of the Cooper Hewitt National Design Award for Lifetime Achievement and is an AIGA Lifetime Achievement Award winner. Anderson is co-author of 15 books on design, typography, and illustration with Steven Heller, and her work is in the collections of the Library of Congress, the National Museum of African American History and Culture, and the Milton Glaser Design Archives at the School of Visual Arts.

Greg Dubeau RGD
Greg is freelance graphic designer who has lived and worked across Canada from coast to coast. He runs a small design studio in Halifax, Nova Scotia where he collaborates with agencies, organizations and entrepreneurs to make their businesses look and work a little bit better than they did yesterday. In the Winter of 2020, he taught at NSCAD University and is slated to teach at McKenzie College in the Fall.

Hyein Lee RGD
Hyein Lee is an engineer turned an illustrator and motion graphics >designer. She gave up her big fat pay cheque to pursue her dream; she is poor now, but somehow a lot happier painting friendly monsters. She exhibited her monsters all around the world including Berlin, Paris and Mexico. She has taught at OCADU and Centennial College. She is currently a professor at Sheridan College's BA Illustration program.

Saskia van Kampen
Saskia has taught graphic design at OCAD University as an Assistant Professor since 2014 and is now Assistant Professor of Visual Communication at San Francisco State University. Her research agenda is focused on developing community-based so-design projects that involve students, believing that by doing so she is supporting the next generation of designers to be socially driven in terms of accessible and inclusive design outcomes. Her research includes critical pedagogy in studio design courses, writing in the disciplines and co-design practices. Before moving to the US, she was RGD VP of Education and in her role, she initiated, developed and helped run RGD's nation-wide Designathon program. Since moving to San Francisco, she has joined the AIGA and works closely with the SFSU AIGA student organization. Saskia is also a contemporary feminist artist, using traditional creative practices such as needlework to deconstruct contemporary design methods and messages.

Diana Varma RGD

Toronto Metropolitan University

Diana Varma RGD is an award-winning design educator by day and a podcaster by night; getting creative with creatives about all things creative. She is a woman in STEAM who operates a traditional offset printing press, a variety of digital press technologies, as well as engaging in exploratory print-making practices such as LEGO letterpress. She teaches within the School of Graphic Communications Management (GCM) and the Master of Digital Media (MDM) program at Toronto Metropolitan University, as well as through digital learning platform, Domestika.

Diana has written 150+ published articles in Graphic Arts Magazine and through the Association of Registered Graphic Designers, as well as 170+ episodes through her podcast called Talk Paper Scissors, speaking with global experts about design, printing, typography, branding, books and publishing.

Diana holds the position of VP of Education on the RGD Board of Directors for Canada’s largest professional association for graphic designers and she’s actively involved in organizational initiatives, chairing the RGD’s Education Committee, regularly speaking at conferences and conducting workshops.

Greg Dubeau RGD

Greg Dubeau — Graphic Designer

Greg Dubeau RGD is an independent graphic designer, illustrator, and writer based out of Halifax, Nova Scotia. His collaboration helps agencies, organizations, and entrepreneurs look and work a little bit better than they did yesterday.

Bianca DiPietro RGD

HelloFresh Canada

My name is Bianca. I’m a designer, educator, and generally fearless human. I believe the best things happen when you’re absolutely audacious in your approach.

I was born to be a designer. My mom, a passionate teacher and illustrator, made me unafraid to be different and taught me to view the world as an endless creative opportunity. As a young adult, I followed my destiny and entered a Bachelor of Design program, followed by a Masters in Design. I devoured everything from the basics to the arbitrary nature of letterforms, and thrived.

After graduation, I put my creative spirit to work at agencies and magazines. I evolved alongside the world of design, picking up programming languages, web skills, leadership experience, and more. Over time people sought out my willingness to take risks and defy convention, and I’ve been running a successful freelance business since 2011.

In 2014, I returned to my roots and began teaching as a contract instructor at George Brown and Sheridan College. I found pure joy in connecting with students and quickly realized that teaching would be my most rewarding adventure. Learn more about my work as a teacher and mentor.

I bring the same energy to my life as I do to my work. I’m a coder, connoisseur of donuts and data visualization, runner of half marathons, charity rower, and a former member of the Hamilton Roller Derby League (but you’ll still catch me on skates most weeks).

In all my exploits, I am certain of one thing: you have to be fearless to be a true original.