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Students and Web Professionals Pledge to Overhaul Four Non-profits' Web Sites in Just 48 Hours


Published:

January 11, 2011

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Local web design students and professionals will be pulling out all the stops this weekend to develop and launch brand-new websites for four Indianapolis non-profit organizations in just 48 non-stop hours.

The project – now in its second year - partners top student talent from the IU School of Informatics at IUPUI with professionals from RefreshIndy, a local organization of web designers, developers and graphic artists. They’ll eat, sleep and work in the school’s computer labs and classrooms to deliver fresh, fully-operational websites on time and with absolutely no budget – all in the name of community service and professional development.

It’s a service of immeasurable value for the fortunate non-profits chosen, which include Indy East Asset Development, Teacher’s Treasures, Anna’s Celebration of Life Foundation and the Sustainable Library Citizens Coalition. Organizations organizations were selected based on demonstrated need for a new or enhanced website, as well as future ability to maintain that website.

All not only lack sophisticated websites to adequately support their missions, engage their communities and raise public awareness, but also the resources to afford professional web services. A single website of the quality each non-profit will receive would normally cost thousands to tens of thousands of dollars.

But for these organizations? Not a penny.

Pulling this all off will be no easy feat for the nearly 30 students and professionals involved, as the amount of work done – which will include design, development, photography and video – would likely take a professional two or more weeks under normal circumstances.

But their payoff is tremendous, as professional volunteers from local companies such as Media Sauce, Mango Tree, Media Fuel, Trendy Minds and Web Easy Media get the chance to give back to their community and mentor young talent. And for the student volunteers, the experience represents a unique service learning opportunity and occasion to network with industry professionals.

This non-stop event begins at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, January 14 at the Informatics and Communication Technology Complex on the IUPUI campus. The date leads into IUPUI’s annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service encouraging students, faculty and staff to give back to the greater Indianapolis community.

In addition to the School of Informatics, IUPUI and RefreshIndy, sponsors and supporters include Yats, Marriot Place Hotel and the National Institute for Fitness and Sport.

You can follow along with the weekend’s activities around-the-clock on Twitter using hashtag #48hrweb.

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About IU School of Informatics at IUPUI:
The Indiana University School of Informatics was established in 2000 as one of the first schools in the nation dedicated to education and research in informatics. Informatics uniquely integrates computing, social science and information systems design to study how we use technology to communicate, work and engage. That knowledge is then applied to develop innovative IT solutions impacting our communities, science, healthcare, entertainment, law and business. The IU School of Informatics is located on the campus of Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and offers an array of certificate, B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. programs. For additional information, please visit www.informatics.iupui.edu.

About RefreshIndy:
RefreshIndy is a free professional organization for designers and developers interested in refreshing the creative and technical web professions in the Indianapolis area. We meet bi-monthly and promote design, technology and usability, RefreshIndy is a part of the Refreshing Cities movement. Learn more at www.refreshindy.com.