What's for lunch?
I graduated from Davidson College in 2016. At the time, the information architecture seemed like it hadn't been updated since Woodrow Wilson attended, and rumor has it that despite how much Steph Curry loved Commons, he left Davidson early because of how hard it was to figure out what was for lunch everyday. Beyond food menus, learning about what was happening on campus, what number to call if you were locked out, or even which laundry machines were available, was a disaster.
This was all happening at the time when the modern student's standard for a seamless user-experience was set by the decade-defining social apps that were gaining foothold in our daily experiences. So why then hadn't there been any innovation within the systems Davidson students looked to on a daily basis.
During our senior year, as grades started to seem less relevant, Bjorn Ordoubadian and I set off to try and build a better solution that could live on at Davidson once we left.
We knew that Davidson students needed a lot of information from the College to go about their ordinary days. What's for lunch? When does that office open? Which laundry machines are available? And we knew that accessing that information was really inefficient.
But we didn't know how inefficient until we mapped the whole ecosystem. Outdated websites, hidden-PDFs, applications not optimized for mobile—it was a mess! We realized that not only was information incredibly fragmented, but there were several services that were underutilized by students simply because they didn't know they existed. That's wasted tuition dollars.
Our goal was simple: take all of the information a Davidson student needs on a daily basis, and streamline it into one interface that meets a modern student's expectations for how easy it should be to access information.