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College of Innovation and Design Moving Forward

By: Sherry Squires   Published 10:11 am / November 10, 2014

Aerials, cityscape, campus scene, John Kelly photo

Boise State President Bob Kustra announced plans to form a new College of Innovation and Design in his fall address, and those plans are moving forward.

The new college was recently approved by the State Board of Education. It will be a university-wide hub and academic laboratory that funds new pathways of learning that anticipate the demands and opportunities of our ever-changing world and workplace. Faculty teams will generate pioneering degrees, badges and certificates as well as design new and innovative approaches to research, community engagement efforts and other initiatives that transcend conventional university boundaries, structures or disciplines.

The inaugural projects under development within the College of Innovation and Design include:

Graduate Certificate in Energy Analysis: This certificate in energy analysis addresses a key workforce need by providing graduate students with the skills and analytical methods to address complex energy challenges for industry and government. The project lead is David Solan, Public Policy and Administration.

Major in Games, Interactive Media and Mobile Technology: This new program will prepare students for careers developing and managing the interactive technology that informs how we live and work, and encompasses diverse departments including Art, Computer Science, Information Technology and Supply Chain Management, and Educational Technology. The project lead is Anthony Ellertson, Computer Science.

Certificate in Leadership: This certificate in leadership leverages experiential learning to prepare students for leadership in multiple contexts in a changing world. The project lead is Heidi Reeder, Communication.

School of Narrative Arts: This new professional program will offer communication skill development for diverse fields including filmmaking, advertising, law, journalism, social work, public relations and politics. The project lead is Brady Udall, English.

Bridge to Career: This program will develop badges and certificates in skills and knowledge correlated to employability, encouraging students to reach across disciplinary lines to gain credentials relevant to the job market. The project leads are College of Business and Economics Dean Ken Petersen and Andrew Finstuen, the interim dean for the new college.

Human and Environmental Systems Research Center: This research center emphasizes the application of quantitative approaches that integrate human and natural processes to create new understanding of complex socio-ecological systems, with the goal of promoting creative and practical solutions for a sustainable future in Idaho and the world. The project lead is Nancy Glenn, Geosciences.

Vertically Integrated Projects (VIP): VIP offers large-scale research projects that are both multidisciplinary and multiyear, focusing on challenging, real world problems and enabling undergraduate teams to work together with faculty and graduate students in a way that benefits everyone. The project lead is Sian Mooney, Economics.

The college also plans to host innovative workshops, speakers and other events. For more information and to stay informed of college activities and future funding calls, visit the College of Innovation and Design website at