Despite New York University (NYU) having granted public health related degrees for over 40 years, it wasn’t until 2015 when NYU decided to consolidate several programs under the newly formed College of Global Public Health (CGPH). Their mission is to promote health and to advance health equity by cultivating and inspiring public health scholars, practitioners and leaders to engage in action-oriented initiatives that span disciplinary and geographic boundaries.
As the “youngest” NYU college, CGPH sought to establish a web presence that was reflective of their values: forward thinking, diverse, and exclusively located in New York — “the city where the future comes to audition.” In order to maximize the functionality and visual impact of the new site on a fixed budget, the client team leveraged both in-house technical expertise and a Drupal 8 code base (also built by Four Kitchens) from sister school, the NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing. The CGPH team wanted to build on the functional foundation of the existing code, while utilizing a clean-sheet design for the site’s look and feel.
Four Kitchens was critical to the success of launching our new Drupal 8 powered site. As a previously successful vendor on the NYU Meyers College of Nursing site, I was confident that they could deliver again on the high expectations from the CGPH team.
Discovery and Design
Everyone has their own discovery process, and ours involved two days and a wealth of sticky notes and games that we use to identify goals, define what success looks like, create personas, and more. With that information in hand, we then created a series of style tiles to capture the adventurous and bold spirit of CGPH, working on a large number of iterations until we had crafted the right aesthetic.
At this point we usually go straight to designing in the code but for this project we created a few key pages as comps to help with the approval process. In the end we had designs that pushed the envelope visually, components that were dynamic and reusable, and a team ready to move from design to execution.
It was a pleasure working with Four Kitchens – from the first day of our discovery meeting until the final scrum meeting after the new site’s final deployment, the web chefs from 4K felt like a team that had our backs and were willing to do whatever it took to make sure our site was the success that we wanted it to be.
The new site — publichealth.nyu.edu — went live at the end of April 2017. The fresh visual design, editorial interface, and integration with existing NYU systems has earned it rave reviews from students, staff, and faculty. The project was completed on budget, and despite sharing similar code with it’s D8 sister site (NYU College of Nursing), delivered the fresh and forward-thinking visual design that was important to the young college.
- On-site Discovery Workshop to identify goals, create personas, and define success.
- Visual and Interaction Design using style tiles, static comps, and live HTML comps
- Architecture and hosting planning and integration
- Integration with existing NYU APIs
- Deployment and follow up support
- Drupal 8
- Paragraphs Module
- Apache Solr