No Student Left Behind

Simon Burchell under CC BY-SA 4.0 –

A good start

Matt Hassebrock has been a high school teacher in the Bay Area California for nearly a decade now. “At Redwood, Castro Valley USD, the student population is made up of 70% to 80% or more low-income students.”

When COVID-19 forced all schools into distance learning online, the school was faced with a big challenge. In the beginning, the majority of their students were without Internet access or the proper technology in order to participate in online schooling. Luckily, thanks to the hard work of the school and funding from the local and federal government, “every request for a computer and or internet access at zero cost to the students or families” was fulfilled.

The ones who need help

Castro Valley USD was lucky in having the funding and supplies in order to support their students that were in need during the transition into distance learning. However, this has not been as easy of a transition for the majority of schools around the country. There are an estimated 4.4 million households with little to no access to a computer or internet. And many schools around the country were under prepared to support students during the transition into online schooling. Because of how quickly this was sprung upon the country, schools everywhere were in desperate need of help.

U.S. Department of State under CC BY-NC 2.0 –

Where can students in need turn to?

The transition to online schooling during the height of the pandemic happened all together very quickly. This was very difficult on families, teachers and students that were unprepared for an online learning experience. There are hundreds of thousands of students in this country that depend on schools and libraries for access to internet and computers that allow them to participate and keep up in school.

When all of their support systems were shut down, they were left with nothing and were at a high chance of being left behind. Many students rely heavily on resources such as the public or school library to have access to a computer or the internet. This is why support and funding for low-income students is so important.

No student should be left behind because they cannot afford a computer or internet. In order to help these students, the country and the government needed to act fast in order to provide support and funding for low-income students and families.

Solutions are on the way

Matt Boring, the principal for Corvallis high school here in Oregon says their school “received a great deal of funding from the Higher Education Relief fund.” The Higher Education Relief fund appropriated $82 billion for education in late 2020 in an attempt to help counter the harsh effects of transitioning into online schooling.

Corvallis high school was able to use this funding and the supplies they had on hand to provide “Chromebooks for any students that wanted or needed one and free WIFI hotspots to students that lacked internet access.” The funding that the Higher Education Relief program was able to provide for schools has been essential in helping low-income students successfully continue their education during this time. For low-income students in rural areas that cannot reach or were not able to obtain free WIFI hotspots, there may be another possible solution.

Barrett.Discover under CC BY 2.0 –

Municipal broadband internet access has potential to be a helpful tool during this situation because it would allow students in rural areas to be able to afford and get access to internet. The Mayor of Corvallis Biff Traber has some doubts about municipal broadband access. “To me, the major downside is the cost of setting up and operating such a system.”

Biff references a municipal broadband system called MINET up in Monmouth and Independence. “One characteristic I understand is that it spent years operating at a substantial loss, costing the cities.” Although he is not sold on the idea of municipal broadband because of the risk and the cost associated, he sees “additional possible solutions using existing service providers.” He believes that working with existing service providers would be a quicker and more efficient way to get affordable internet access to those without it.

“One more thought on broadband access within the Benton County is whether the issue is physical access or cost to the subscriber.” For most low-income families, the cost of these applications is the reason that they are without internet or computers at home. “If so, the issue to be considered is whether the public funds can be used to offset the cost of those services or whether the government can demand low basic access fees as part of their franchise agreement.”

Whether it is the expense of internet access or being out of reach from it, there are hundreds of thousands of students that need internet access. Working with service providers during this time will be pivotal in order to successfully help low-income families receive internet at a reduced expense.

A bright future

Although this situation is not the best and there is plenty of work to be done, there is hope. Funding and support have proven to work for Matt Hassebrock at Castro Valley USD (and Matt Boring at Corvallis high school) as it “allowed us to satisfy every request for a computer and internet access.”

It is important that schools and governments work quickly with students and families being affected during this time. There will not be one single solution to this problem. A student in need of a computer will require different support than a student in need of internet access. But with the correct support and funding, there will be an answer to every student’s needs in this country.

With the support of hard-working government officials, teachers and families, there will be no student left behind.

  1. Diallo, Amadou. “Low Tech Solutions for Students without Internet Access at Home.” The Hechinger Report, 20 Nov. 2020,
  • USAFacts. “More than 9 Million Children Lack Internet Access at Home for Online Learning.” USAFacts, USAFacts, 19 Oct. 2020,
  • 10, et al. “The Absence of Internet at Home Is a Problem for Some Students.” The Edvocate, 14 Aug. 2018,

iPad and Apple Pencil

A designers dream tool

The items I chose to analyze are the iPad and the Apple Pencil. As technology has advanced over time, designers now have a plethora of options to choose from in order to create and design. Apple’s iPad and Apple Pencil are great tools that allow designers to draw, write, and illustrate on a handheld platform from anywhere. There are many apps that can be downloaded on the iPad such as illustrator, Procreate, and Callipeg. The iPad has become increasingly more powerful and costs anywhere between $200 and $600 and the Apple Pencil costs between $100 and $130. It is becoming more and more common to see the iPad being advertised towards designers or creatives. Their commercials highlight the qualities of the iPad that make designing seem easier than ever and the extra tools such as the Apple Pencil that help with this. I believe that the iPad and Apple Pencil are becoming a very popular tool amongst designers because it is easy to use, very light weight and handheld, and can perform designing tasks from any location. I can see the iPad becoming more and more popular in the near future as designers need tools that allow them to design away from the desk. When someone needs to sketch out an idea when they do not have access to their computer, it would be easier for them to have the smaller iPad with them on the road. The Apple Pencil is a great tool that allows you to draw or write in a way that seems smooth and effortlessly. The intended audience is expanding as more and more people are becoming interested in designing. As technology continues to advance, it is becoming easier for people to design. It is also getting much easier for people with little design knowledge to design because of the technology and the availability of resources such as YouTube where they can find videos that help them learn how to use the iPad and its apps. I see the iPad and the Apple Pencil remaining prominent tools for designers to use as we continue into the future. The convenience of it being handheld and easy to transport alone makes it such a powerful tool. Along with this, the technology will continue to get better and so will the apps that are on the iPad. Overall, I think that both the iPad and the Apple Pencil will continue to help designers create and grow.


NMC 301

Hello everyone,

I chose this layout for my blog because I believe it is the most clean and good looking. It is very simple to manage and has all the needed information on this one page. I think the functionality of this page is what makes it best!


Week 8

Handicap Grab Bar for Toilets

The design I chose to examine that is intended to help the disabled is a handicap support rail for restrooms. This product is specifically designed to help the elderly and disabled comfortably get up from the toilet. This design is simple yet very important for people who have trouble getting up or need extra support in doing so. This design is effective in use because it provides the user with additional support for standing up or making sure they do not fall over. The bathroom is normally a very private place so this design also allows the user to perform a task on their own when they may have needed additional support from another human if they did not have access to this.

This product is designed to fix the problem and not the person by allowing the person to use the product in order to get the desired outcome (sitting down on or standing up off the toilet). This product is fairly cheap and very reliable. I believe that because of the price and how effective it is, this is a great use of resources in order to help solve the problem at hand for people who need to be using one of these. People who may be excluded from this design or have trouble using it would be people who need more additional support than this and may not be able to lift themselves on their own power. In this case, this design is not fully effective for the user, but it still is in the same category as what that person may need to be using. I think this design is very smart in keeping it simple, sturdy, and safe so that the user can get the desired outcome without much strain. Because of this, I think that this design was used really well. I think that there can always be improvements on design but this one does not need more because of its simply goal. For the purposes of helping elderly or disabled persons up off the toilet, this design is effective and beneficial for all who use it.


Annotated Bibliography

Title: The Power of Political Graphic Design on Elections

Author: Nadja Sayej

The Author: Nadja Sayej is a culture journalist who writes for countless websites, magazines, and news stations that cover entertainment, film., TV, contemporary art, music, comedy and more. She has also published five books.

Summary: This article explains the “Do’s and Don’ts” of political design through the eyes of the Three Creative Communications political design firm. There is no question that political design is very influential on swaying voters and either helping or hurting a campaign or candidate. The firm’s content director, Domenica Ghanem, believes that their political design is not actually swaying voters but rather “effectively informing voters.” It stresses the importance of correctly informing the voters about the issues they care about and using messages that will get to the middle of the issue being addressed. This helps with connecting to the voters by connecting to the values they hold.

Domenica Ghanem also said, “It’s about building a relationship between the people and who they want representing them and, we’re reaching them everywhere they actually are—through print, web and mobile.”

Using print, web and mobile ways of advertising a political campaign is important because the more people see your message the more, they will begin to connect with it. There are some rules in political design, however. The colors red and blue will always mean and separate the two national parties. This is something that has always been used in design and will continue to be. However, there has been a shift in design in order to be less about the party but about the candidate themselves. Along with this, certain typefaces, fonts and colors have associations to certain parties or ideals that political graphic designers need to be aware about.

Lastly, this article stressed the importance of election day publicity. Election day should be the day that most advertising is getting out and in the face of the voters. This is important because it reminds them at the last minute who they should be voting for.

Overall, this article covered a lot on how political designers decide to take action and what options they have to do so.

Citation: Sayej, Nadja. “The Power of Political Graphic Design on Elections.” PRINT, PRINT, 16 Sept. 2020,

Title: How Democrats Designed Branding for the First Virtual National Convention

Author: Hunter Schwarz

The Author: Hunter Schwarz is a writer who covers the intersection of politics and pop culture. He has worked for numerous major news outlets such as The Washington Post, CNN, BuzzFeed and AIGA.

Summary: This article covered the differences between having a normal in person National Convention compared to having one completely virtual online. The normal National Convention was full of billboards, posters, signage, and other visual graphics that made the event so powerful. It was where a group of similar thinking people get to meet and celebrate their party and everything that it stands for. Because of COVID, this was no longer an option for the 2020 election, and it was forced online. Although being forced to go all online seemed unfortunate and devastating at first, it quickly became the beginning of many new opportunities for political graphics.

There are certain visuals that go along with and represent the different parties very well. The Democrats have the Donkey, and the Republicans have the Elephant. Now that everything was moved to online, the opportunity to create new visuals and graphics for the Democratic party exploded.

One huge thing that designers did for this National Convention was allow supporters to customize and personalize social graphics for their social media pages, avatars, smartphone wallpapers, zoom backgrounds and more. This was a very smart move because it continued to get the visuals and the message of their party out in the world and create advertising.

Because of COVID, the world of political graphic design changed, and it opened a door for a new world of possibilities.

Citation: Schwarz, Hunter. “How Democrats Designed Branding for the First Virtual National Convention.” Eye on Design, 18 Aug. 2020,

Title: Politics, Politics

Author: Steven Heller

The Author: Steven Heller (design writer) is many things. He was the art director at New York Times for 33 years and is currently the MFA Designer as Author Department, Special Consultant to the President of SVA for New Programs and writes the Visuals column for the New York Times Book Review.

Summary: This article covers the changes that were being made in political magazines with The Nation and George (both magazine titles). The article starts by explaining how the American political graphic design magazine has always been about inspiring national politics and always having a distinct look that did not vary all that much. This began to change with two political magazines The Nation and George.

The Nation is Americas older publication of the left side and visually reinvented itself in order to attract a new audience without scaring away the loyal long-time readers that they have had for many years. They did this by continuing to be very well informed and educated and giving only the facts while now creating a new visually attractive cover and illustrations that help intrigue the newer readers.

One thing the author points out is that there was never a clear distinct style between the left and the right in political magazines until both began to target younger audiences and move towards full-color covers for their issues.

Overall, the most important thing this article covered was how graphic design politics was re-invented in order to not only better represent the party’s better but also make them more distinct from one another. It points out that while this is a great tactic to personalize a party and separate the two, it is dangerous in that it causes more divide than it unites.

Citation: Heller, Steven. “Politics, politics.” Print, vol. 50, no. 4, July-Aug. 1996, p. 20+. Gale Academic.OneFile, Accessed 11 Feb. 2021

Title: The Influence of Graphic Design on Politics, Protest, and Power

Author: Charlotte Jansen

The Author: Charlotte Jansen is a talented researcher, writer and editor-at-large for the Elephant, the Guardian, Artsy, Vice, Wallpaper and more. Along with this, she has written two books and works primarily on contemporary art and culture and its social purpose and impact.

Summary: This article explains the effects that graphic design has on politics and how graphic design by itself will always be political once it is open to the public.

The ‘Hope to Nope: Graphics and Politics’ museum was created to illustrate a deep dive into the graphic design of the last decade. There have been so many changes in the world politically, culturally and physically that have greatly impacted the way that graphic design is interpreted and released into the public. One of the main goals of the ‘Hope to Nope’ museum was to demonstrate how graphic design “informs, educates, entertains and provokes” the general public. New technologies have now democratized graphic design and made it political. Because of this new technology, everyone is able to have a clear political voice online and illustrate it in a way that speaks the most truth to them using hashtags, posts, or even memes.

Along with this, there are moments in graphic design that have propelled action and changed the course of history. Lucienne Roberts, the graphic designer behind the Hope to Nope museum said, “Whether effective or not, graphic design, especially once out in the public space, is always political.”

Now more than ever this statement rings true and holds power over the future of politics.

Citation: Jansen, Charlotte. “The Influence of Graphic Design on Politics, Protest and Power.” Wallpaper*, Wallpaper*, 24 Apr. 2018,


Week 6

How can you begin to work environmental good into your personal design process?

A long time before I was born, the Earth began to die. As a society, we fought to grow, explore, create, expand and build while all along damaging the one constant we need to continue on. Now more than ever a change needs to be made in this world. A change to stop harming our planet but to start healing it. This is no easy task and there is no one answer, but one thing is for sure, it is going to take all of us collectively to do it.

As designers, we are given a unique opportunity to help combat the damage that is being done to our planet. We are in a position of power when it comes to the values we represent and how we will express them. I think that we all have a huge responsibility to begin working together in order to inspire environmental good in this world. A quote from one of the readings stuck out to me today. “Our first green products must be ourselves.” I think this quote is powerful because of how true it is. We can create green products, promote environmentally friendly messages and have core values that align with those messages but that won’t make a difference. What will make a difference is the changing of all of us at our core to want to become green and help the environment.

There are a lot of ways that businesses could and should implement design for good into day-to-day work. For instance, companies should respect nature and create safe objects of long-term value. This means not creating something that will end up being damaging to future generations or require severe maintenance in the future. Another thing that we can do to help is eliminate the concept of waste and use natural systems where there is no waste. As designers these are things that can be illustrated and pushed for within a company or corporation.

Personally, I feel a big responsibility to use good within my design process. I want to make change in this world for the better and not contribute to the downfall of our planet. There is not a lot of time left to make a substantial change and it has never been so important that we as designers and we as a society make that change. I look forward to working for the benefit of the environment and using my design process to its full capabilities.


Design and Politics

Do you feel included, ignored, galvanized, patronized, disillusioned, or something else entirely?

When it comes to political design work, it is safe to assume that every angle and method is strategical. There are many ways that political design can be viewed but, in the end, its primary purpose is to influence the way you feel about a party, candidate, or side of an issue. This can make people feel used and disillusioned or it can make you feel galvanized and patronized. For myself, I feel lucky to know the difference. Political design can almost be compared to working the strings of a puppet (the puppet being the political figure or party). There are different methods the puppet master (political designer) can use to influence the audience (the voters). He can use fear and anger to belittle the other party or candidate in order to create divide. He can use praise for his political candidate and choose one side. Or he can offer peace to the audience or voters as a whole. Because there are so many different ways that political design can be used to influence and sway votes of people, I personally feel a few emotions.

The TED Radio Hour: Manipulation

In some cases, like Trump’s red MAGA hat, I feel belittled and disrespected because the design has chosen to be simplified so much that it feels as if they did not care. They had a message they wanted to get out there as quickly and cheaply as they could, and they did just that. This form of design work feels rude to the people who did not side with him politically and creates a barrier between people who support him and do not. I personally felt that the Trump organizations political design work, and his misogynistic, ignorant and revolting personality, hurt his campaign enough to have a sway in the 2020 election which he did not win.

The Biden organization political design work made me feel a completely different way. Throughout his campaign, he stressed his want and goal for uniting the people of America. This was clear and evident with his choices and communication of design. His campaigns political design work offered me a sense of peace instead of hostility. A sense of unity instead of division. And a sense of pride instead of disgust and embarrassment. In my opinion, Biden had a great campaign that tried to help bring together the people and that is how political design should be used.

Political design holds great power in this world and should be used to unify and not divide. It is important that political designers work for what they believe in so that they communicate a message that is not only true to them but true to the political party or candidate that they are working for. If political design is done correctly, it makes me feel safer knowing that there is a hope for peace, and a truly United States.


The Toronto Raptors

Logo Critique

  1. Introduction

The Toronto Raptors are a Canadian professional basketball team based in Toronto. The Raptors compete in the National Basketball Association (NBA) as a member of the league’s Eastern Conference Atlantic Division. With the help of their former star player Kawhi Leanord, they won the NBA championship in 2019 for the first time in team history. Since then, “We The North” has become a battle cry for this team and all of its fans. Because of this, in 2020 the organization decided to make yet another change to their logo in order to better represent the attitude and identity of the basketball team.

2. History and Original Logo Designs

Before the Toronto Raptors began to play in 1995, they needed to formulate a brand identity and logo. At the time, John Bitove was the owner of the organization and had a heavy influence on the name and creation of the logo for the team. Because of his and his families love for the “Jurassic Park” movies, he decided that the organization should be centered around the “Fierce” and “Terrifying” raptors that play a huge role in the first film. Creative Director Tom O’Grady worked side by side John Bitove to design the original logo for the Toronto Raptors.

After many different iterations of this take, they finally decided the original Tom O’Grady drew was the best course of action for the team.

The purple seen in the Raptors first logo was chosen because it seemed to be a “Hip and in” color of the time. They then quickly decided to illustrate the raptor as being red in order to represent Canada without using a maple leaf illustration.

1995/96 – 2007/08 logo

3. Most Recent Logo Change

After the 2019/20 NBA season, the Toronto Raptors released a statement claiming they were once again making adjustments to their logo and uniforms. Focusing on the “We The North” slogan, the organization made minor changes to their logo that ended up being very impactful.

2015/16 – 2019/20 logo

2020/21 – present logo

As you can see in the illustrations above, the logo changed its outermost circular ring from red to white and the inner claw-torn ball from grey to red. Along with this, they darkened the inner black color which helped make the “Toronto Raptors” type really pop off the page and attract the eye more. The new logo represents that “attitude and will are an important part of our identity system.” This was proven impactful by removing all unnecessary factors of the logo, such as the color grey and thick red outer line, in order to provide a new logo that “your adult aesthetic senses will likely be pleased” with.

4. My Thoughts

Initially, I felt as if the simplification and deletion of the original raptor design was dangerous in that they were removing a key visual element that had long represented the organization and its values. I personally was a huge fan of the original because it was so unique compared to any other team logo that was in the NBA.

After they made the change in 2015/16, I was disappointed because the logo had now been simplified down to its core and in my opinion lacked visual elements that attracted the attention of the eye. In their press statement, the organization loosely said it was time to grow up and get ready for the new Toronto Raptors, which I can see is what they were trying to do with the logo. However, I did not feel as if I was looking at a new Toronto Raptors logo until the changes made in 2020.

2015/16 logo change

The new logo now feels to me as if I am looking at a professional organization that has strong characteristics and is respected in its community. I think I feel this way because they have taken their core values such as representing the north (Canada) and the fierceness of the team and its fans and put it all into one subtle but effective design. Making the inner claw-torn ball red was brilliant in that it not only went back to the original red raptor logo, but it also represented Canada and “We The North” much better than the original grey color. Making the inner black color darker was perfect because it immediately attracts the eye of the viewer much more effectively.

2020/21 – present logo change

5. Conclusion

After my analysis of the logo change, I find that I truly enjoy and appreciate the 2020/21 logo. I think it is professional, clean, and is effective in representing the organization. The latest logo change was a great step forward for the organization and it created a truly unique and impactful design that I believe will be the face of the team for years to come.


Marshall McLuhan

The Medium is the Message

Marshall McLuhan’s communication theory and ideas about hot and cold mediums have remained relevant and somewhat accurate since he released it to the world. Although society and technology have changed since his lifetime, the core principals of his theory have continued to be accurate. Marshall McLuhan’s idea of hot and cold mediums is simple. Hot mediums, such as radio and film (of his time), are clear, information-rich media that require little participation by the listener or viewer and are effective in communicating the message with high quality sound or clear visuals. Cold mediums, such as political cartoons and television (of his time), are seen as low-definition and cool because they require more of our involvement from the listener or viewer. However, in the modern-day, television would most likely be seen as a hot medium because it has developed into having both quality sound and clear visuals. And like television, almost all technology has advanced and changed rapidly resulting in a different scale of whether a medium is hot or cold, but his point remains the same, the medium is the message. Now more than ever the world is filled with electronics, WIFI, and technology that connects people from all over in an instant with just the touch of a screen. Because of this, we have been beginning to see something Marshall McLuhan calls the Global Village. His idea of a Global Village describes how the entire world becomes more interconnected as a result of the distribution of media technologies throughout the world. For instance, when the terrorist attacks of 9/11 happened, it was broadcasted live across almost every new station in America. Millions of people sat behind their televisions viewing the same information, the same stories and feeling the same emotions. Simultaneously, the nation was receiving extensive amounts of information all on the same medium source. This is where Marshall McLuhan would remind us, the medium is the message. If the technology that developed television or the internet into the modern medium it is today was not invented, millions of Americans would have woken up the day after 9/11 to find out the news of the attacks from a newspaper. Reading about these attacks instead of watching it happen live time through a screen would greatly impact the way the message was interpreted and the intensity of emotions that would be felt. For these reasons I know that Marshall McLuhan is right in saying the medium is the message.


mark per iversen

Hello, my name is Mark Iversen and I am a third-year Graphic Design student at Oregon State University. I am from the Bay Area in California and am currently home taking my classes.

My journey into design began before I even knew what design was. Since I was young, I’ve always been passionate about music, album design, and music video creation. A lot of these passions came from my father who is very influential in my life so naturally he passed on his love for Pink Floyd, The Grateful Dead, Led Zeppelin… the list goes on. At the time I didn’t realize it, but he was also forming my passion for creation and design. Now that I have been studying graphic design I realize there are endless possibilities when it comes to where I can land a career. There are also a lot of things I have found passion in such as logo and advertisement design. And because of that, I feel as if I do not want to be locked down into one category of design, but rather have careers in many areas of design. My goal is to be able to freelance successfully without limiting myself to one category. Right now, I do not know where I will end up after graduating from Oregon State, but I am okay with that because I know I made the right choice in choosing what I would be studying.