Launch Announcement: NYU Wagner Graduate School of Public Service Nov. 2nd, 2016 Randy Oest
NYU Wagner - Site Launch!

Launch Announcement: NYU Wagner Graduate School of Public Service

November 2nd, 2016

We are pleased to introduce to you and the world to the new website for the New York University Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service . NYU Wagner is a public policy school that offers a comprehensive curriculum in public and nonprofit administration, policy, and management. Over the course of only five months the site has been updated front-to-back to better serve the educational and community goals of Wagner’s students, faculty, and staff.

On the backend we’ve upgraded the site from Drupal 7 into a fresh and modern Drupal 8 installation, continuing our focus on keeping our clients current on technology for a longer project lifetime. On the frontend the site has fresh visuals and updated content to aid visitors as they explore or search the site. For site admins we integrated a living style guide into the site that stays up-to-date when changes to the Drupal theme are made.

Migrating to Drupal 8

The NYU Wagner team was eager to take this opportunity while migrating from Drupal 7 to Drupal 8 to streamline their architecture. We reviewed the previous architecture and consolidated the myriad specialized content types into a consistent collection of reusable and scalable content types.

The migration process was tricky. As work progressed on the site the Migration path between Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 was evolving, which necessitated updates mid-stream. The process also brought a few migration bugs to light which were fixed for this project and then submitted to the Drupal community so that they could get resolved.

Creating a Living Style Guide

Drupal 8 opens up a lot of new options for frontend development, thanks to the new template engine, Twig, and we used this to create a solution for Wagner’s site editors. One of the concerns on this project was making sure that site editors were consistent in the application of styles across the site. Enter a living style guide, built with KSS and Twig. KSS was used to organize and assemble the style guide and Twig was used for the style templates which were in turn were directly used in Drupal templates. Now when styles are updated in the theme, the style guide is too.

Engineering and Development Specifics

  • Drupal 8 site extended with contrib and custom modules
  • Migration advancements for Drupal 7 to Drupal 8 migrations
  • Migration of videos hosted on Vimeo and controls to keep all video information up-to-date from Vimeo
  • Living style guide for site editors by integrating twig components with Drupal templates
  • Config-based build utilizing Drupal 8 improvements to Aquifer, GitHub, and CircleCI

The Team

The Four Kitchens team was headed by Allan Chappell (backend engineer and migration) and included Alex Hicks (project manager), Jon Peck (backend engineer), Donna Habersaat (UX), Randy Oest (frontend engineer) and Ben Teegarden (frontend engineer). Thanks also to the NYU Wagner internal team of Lawrence Mirsky, Hollis Calhoun, Rachel Szala Grant, Chun Fang and Haris Ahmed.

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