Rebuilding AIGA Vermont

Crafting a New Mission.

At the end of 2020, AIGA Vermont entered a year of intensive internal research to better align our chapter structure and programming with our primary purpose: to provide value to the Vermont design community. We’ve been creating next steps to the feedback that was clearly articulated through the questionnaires, focus groups, and interviews in which you all participated. 

The following report is a synthesis of 74 days of intensive outreach and research to our Vermont and New Hampshire community conducted from September 21 to December 4, 2020.

2020 Membership Survey
The survey was conducted using Typeform with a goal of gathering information to inform a plan to rebuild AIGA VT as a more inclusive, effective, and inspired chapter.

97 complete responses

41% most passionate about typography and design systems

Digital (26%) and Print (23%) make up 49% of design jobs

Design challenges 3.1/5 interest

Creative educational programming 4/5 interest

Business educational programming 3/5 interest

Inspirational educational programming 3/5 interest

Social networking 3/5 interest

64.9% of respondents choose a casual (2-3 events/year) level of program attendance

67% of respondents are interested in Design for Good

62.9% respondents live in Chittenden county

49.5% of respondents are not members

Focus Groups
68 respondents participated in focus group Zoom calls. The calls were 30 minutes and structured with the following questions:

How could AIGA VT support Vermont in-house designers?

How do you define Design for Good for Vermont?

Say there are 2-3 Vermont-specific Design for Good creative educational programming events per year. What does this look like?

1:1 Calls
38 respondents participated in calls. The calls were 30 minutes and open discussion (but primarily focused on programming).

Six Goals
After 18 hours of conversation with 106 people from Vermont and New Hampshire we identified patterns of need and recurring themes specific to our community:

Focus on skill-building workshops that are active and not passive.

Action Taken:

Launching new Student Workshop series. October 20, November 17, and December 8, 2021.

Hosting Emily Cohen Lecture & Workshop sponsored by Solidarity of Unbridled Labour. November 3, 2021.

In-House Support
Building a network for in-house designers to regularly connect, meet, support, and share ideas.

Next Step: Call for volunteers with a goal to launch in 2022.

Creative Residency
A floating creative residency that leads the theme of the year and culminates in a project, exhibition, or publication.

Next Step: Developing scope and planning for 2022.

Mentorship Program
A professional mentorship program that is open to the entire lifespan of creative—from high school to senior-level professional.

Next Step: Call for volunteers with a goal to launch in 2022.

Business Design Education
Organize a task force to lead presentations and workshops to business advocating for the importance of design and designers as it relates to business goals. Connecting businesses with Vermont designers to enhance their business and keep Vermont creative dollars in Vermont.

Next Step: Developing scope and planning for 2022.

Professional Registry
Create a who’s who for freelance creatives and designers, agencies, and teams.

Action Taken: First iteration published on AIGA VT website.

A New mission is in development by the 2021–2023 AIGA VT Board of Directors.

AIGA Vermont Mission

AIGA Vermont brings together creatives dedicated to engaging, educating and facilitating responsible design that supports our local and global community. Through events and professional development, AIGA Vermont encourages participation, collaboration, mentorship and an active exchange of ideas.

AIGA advances design as a professional craft, strategic advantage and vital cultural force. As the largest community of design advocates, we bring together practitioners, enthusiasts, and patrons to amplify the voice of design and create the vision for a collective future. We define global standards and ethical practices, guide design education, enhance professional development, and make powerful tools and resources accessible to all.