Design Degree Project Proposal

  1. Design Question: How might a kit of artifacts and resources enable a community event that increases accessibility and educates communities in rural Arkansas on healthcare?
  2. Sub-questions:
  • How are rural areas influenced by the current healthcare system?
  • How do food deserts manifest into healthcare issues in rural communities?
  • How can the for-profit healthcare system be reformed to be more sustainable and patient-oriented?
  • How do preventative measures increase access to healthcare?

3. Proposed Audience: My audience is low income, underrepresented rural communities in Northwest Arkansas. This demographic tends to be skeptical of systematic intervention. Typically, they continually fall into the cycle of avoiding the medical system until forced into the emergency room, accumulating debt and are unable to return to the doctor until forced to return again. My goal is to address, intervene, and break this unsustainable cycle.

4. Learning Outcomes:

  • How to encourage people to live healthier lifestyles
  • How the healthcare systems functions and how it is sustained
  • How the healthcare system plays a role in suppressing marginalized communities

5. Description of Exploration: I plan to create a community event that incorporates informational booths. The booths will tackle manageable, practical topics, like replacing air filters to prevent childhood asthma (with access to air filters at the booth). There will also be areas dedicated to accessing healthcare for my specific audience.

6. Project Significance: Healthcare impacts everyone’s lives, but it is systematically flawed. Creating a preventative educational experience will set a precedent for other rural communities and allow for better healthcare nationwide without extensive political change.

7. Support Materials:

  • Health Design Thinking by Ellen Lupton and Bon Ku, MD
  • I will also be receiving sources from a member on my thesis committee, Professor Trish Amason, who teaches an Honors course on Health Communication

BFA Graphic Design student at the University of Arkansas. Graduating May 2021.