HCIM Student Success With External Clients

HCIM Student Success With External Clients

In late February, the iSchool's HCIM capstone students presented their mid-year reports to clients; this happened in half day meetings where they presented their work to-date and determined the direction for the rest of the year. All three of our clients were very pleased with the progress, and the Montgomery County Parks and Planning mentioned the students' work (and included a picture) in their weekly newsletter reprinted here. Congratulations to our students!

PALS Park of the Future
We are continuing our relationship with the Partnership for Action Learning in Sustainability (PALS) within the National Center for Smart Growth at the University of Maryland. We currently have 9 projects involving UMD students and faculty. One of these projects – The Park of the Future – is supported by students pursuing a Master of Science in Human-Computer Interaction through the College of Information Studies. During the fall semester four students conducted contextual inquiry interviews with park visitors and potential visitors to understand what brings millennials into the parks, and equally important, what keeps them in the parks. Using this detailed data, the students provided four product concepts showing how we might use technology to increase park visits in both frequency and duration. The product concepts are attached.

Mitra Pedoeem, Deputy Director for Administration and Lead for this PALs project, along with team members Mark Burt (MSD), Laura Dechter (MSD) Michael Ma (PDD) Chris McGovern (ITI), and Mark Wallis (PPS) opted to move forward with the Park Map App and some aspects from the Park Arts System product concept. Mark Burt suggested this proposed Park Map App could supplement the Park App that is already in development within PACP. The students will conduct additional research and interviews as they further develop the product concept to continuously include input from park visitors and potential visitors. By the end of the semester, the PALS students will provide us with a fully developed product concept that we can build and expand over time. What’s exciting is that the product concept will have already been vetted as something that our park visitors and potential visitors are looking for within our parks. The students’ presentation was fascinating. They shared their in-depth research findings in addition to the product concepts. Contact Laura Dechter (MSD) for more information on this project or any of our PALS projects.