collaborators

Spotlight: Alyssa McDonald

Alyssa McDonald is a Greenhouse Studios SFA Graduate Research Assistant.


My Name is Alyssa McDonald and I am a first-year graduate Student at the University of Connecticut.  I am pursuing a Master of Fine Arts in Digital Media and Design.  Before attending UConn, I received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Massachusetts College of Art and Design and worked in the fine art photography industry for four years.
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Spotlight: Kenia Rodriguez

Kenia Rodriguez is a Greenhouse Studios CLAS Graduate Fellow


My name is Kenia Rodriguez and I am a second year MA/PhD track student in English at the University of Connecticut (UConn). In May 2019, I earned my  Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from California State University, Northridge. I am an HSI Pathways/Mellon Student Fellow who hopes to become a professor of children’s literature. I am a first generation college student and the first member of my entire family tree to pursue a graduate education. My research interests stem from my adolescent experiences with young adult literature (YA) and include contemporary American YA literature written by Latina authors, as well as relationships among gender, race, and citizenship.

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Spotlight: Lauren Cronan

Lauren Cronan is a Greenhouse Studios SFA Graduate Research Assistant.


My name is Lauren Cronan and I am a first-year graduate student at the University of Connecticut. I’m pursuing a Master of Fine Arts in Digital Media and Design with a focus on digital culture, learning & advocacy. Before relocating to Hartford, I contributed service, design, programming and instruction in academic and public libraries in Richmond, Virginia. I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography & Filmmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCUarts).

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Spotlight: Luisa Fernanda Arrieta Fernandez

Luisa Fernanda Arrieta Fernandez is a Greenhouse Studios CLAS Graduate Fellow


Luisa ArrietaI’ve always liked museums. But not in the contemplative way most of you might imagine. I like museums in the way a child likes his favorite truck; she looks at it, touches it owning every part of it, and pulls it apart over and over again. I like to separate every part of a museum understanding the ways it represents everything and everyone, except people who look like me. I am an Afro-Colombian woman, born and raised in the Caribbean city of Cartagena, port of entry of the slave trade in Hispanic America. Therefore, my relationship with museums and my research about them are influenced by national and global structures of power that establish a hierarchy of humanity based on race.

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Spotlight: Wenchao Lou

Wenchao Lou is a Greenhouse Studios SFA Graduate Research Assistant


I am very happy to be able to work with professors and students in Greenhouse Studios. I also learned a lot during this year. In my first year at Greenhouse Studios, I was involved in Overrated’s board game design by designing cards and tokens, and using laser cutting to create tokens and cards from cardboard and wood, which will greatly increase the interest of game players. I also worked to continuously improve and update the game rules during playtesting. One goal of the game is to let players get together, and starting discussions to help them better understand each other. 

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Designers and Developers as Scholarly Collaborators

At the heart of the Greenhouse Studios design process is the concept of “collaboration from the start.”  All too often collaborators are brought on board at a late stage merely to implement or put the finishing touches on scholarly projects, not to conceptualize them.  This is particularly true with respect to designers and developers, whose labor and expertise are typically used in a service capacity to support the work of credentialed faculty researchers.  There’s nothing wrong, of course, with hiring a developer to build a website for a scholarly research project, or having a design technologist create colorful and engaging data visualizations.  Indeed, designers, developers and other technologists can enhance conventional research outputs, especially at the publication and dissemination stages, by making them more accessible, more engaging and more comprehensible to broader audiences.

But what happens when collaborators with expertise in design and technology are part of a project team from the very beginning?  Moreover, what happens when technologists work alongside other diverse researchers, whose respective fields may lie adjacent to one another, but rarely overlap?

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d’Archive: Weekly Podcast Produced by Graham Stinnett

d'Archive Logo
Logo by Melica Bloom

Graham Stinnett, Archivist at the UConn Archives & Special Collections and a Content Specialist on our HCPL3 project team, has recently completed Season 1 of his new podcast, d’Archive. Stinnett has produced 15 episodes over the course of this past academic year, each of which provides a window into the fascinating world of the UConn Archives & Special Collections. The entire first season is now available for streaming on iTunes, WHUS.org, and the UConn Archives website.

d’Archive is a weekly show curated by the Archives & Special Collections at the UConn Library to broadcast sound recordings from within collections around themes and interviews conducted amongst archivists, researchers, librarians and music aficionados. This project was established to promote unexpected collections in everyday spaces throughout the campus and surrounding community.
– Graham Stinnett via iTunes

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River Soma Brings to Life Our Design Process Model

When you walk into the Greenhouse Studios space, you are greeted by a giant hand-painted mural of our design process model. As your eyes follow the flexible path and big colorful circles which represent the phases of our process, you are transported to a world of inquiry, collaboration, innovation, and creativity. River Soma, one of our graduate assistants and a UConn Studio Art MFA candidate with a concentration in sculpture, is the mastermind of the work of art. River has been working with Greenhouse Studios since the beginning of the Fall 2017 semester and has been a fantastic addition to the studio- her curiosity and artistry has proven to be valuable assets. She is the curator of the current art exhibition in our space, which previews the works of the third-year MFA Studio Art students. The works of art really light up the space, just like River’s positive charisma! Read the following interview questions below to learn more about River Soma and the design process model mural she painted.

River Soma - Joseph Rodefer DeCamp

River Soma (Left) juxtaposed next to her famous work of art look alike

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Thomas Lee Describes The Charles V Project in Video Interview

Enter Greenhouse Studios and you'll almost always spot Design Technologist Tom Lee diligently at work in the corner project room. Step up to its glass wall and inside you'll see architectural blueprints, virtual reality (VR) equipment, and Tom, who's often wearing a pair of VR goggles and staring into space.  He's not just day dreaming, he is actually working on Greenhouse Studios’ first and furthest-developed collaboration: The Charles V Coronation. This project involves experts from the History, Music, Research Services, and Digital Media & Design departments. Their goal is to recreate the coronation Mass of Charles V, which took place in 1530, as realistically as possible, including the original architectural space, artifacts, and music of the event.

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