Service design for work learning

Designing services for work-based learning experiences of secondary and college students

Completed: 2021
Sponsor: Partnership for Economic Innovation (PEI)
Participants: 10 students of the Master of Visual Communication Design, ASU.

This was a sponsored studio course (Advanced Visual Communication Design Studio II). PEI is a non-profit organization that promotes a culture of innovation in Phoenix aiming to contribute to the economy with research, technology development, and entrepreneurship. The students designed services for work-based learning experiences of secondary and college students in Greater Phoenix. This design problem was associated with PEI’s Pipeline initiative and platform that support job matching and human resource training. With the mentorship of the instructor and the sponsor, students did design research with stakeholders and prototyped proposals of a service or strategy.


  • Design research (observation, interviews, systems mapping).
  • Prototyping (journey maps, user flows, renders, experience prototypes, service blueprint)


  • Students presented five proposals. Two examples below:
    Kelcy (McCall) Barger and Sela Britton proposed ‘Aimployer,’ a trimestral conference that supports employers to offer work-based learning experiences. In the conference, employers will have access to lectures, consultation, and networking. Employers will develop a better understanding of how to offer opportunities to students and recruit better talent in the future.
    Leanna Wu and Qijia (Euca) You proposed a digital service module for Pipeline AZ called Live Projects. This module would help startups to develop professional work while students learn real world skills. Startup employers would be able to post project opportunities in the module. Then, faculty can identify opportunities that fit student learning in courses or other curricular activities.
  • Student Kelcy (McCall) Barger was recruited for an internship in PEI.
  • Journal article draft.
    G. Mauricio Mejía, Yumeng Xie, Luca Simeone & Stephanie Tomlin. Learning strategic design skills with live projects. To be submitted to the Journal of Art and Design Education.