Kate serves as Director of the new Master of Arts in Design and Innovation (MADI) program. She has a background in mechanical engineering, product design, and design research. Much of her recent work focuses on building creative capacity inside organizations. She studies and teaches the ways we innovate on the basis of human needs and behavior, and is responsible for integrating empathy and creativity into the technical engineering curriculum. Kate teaches several design courses including Human-Centered Design and Building Creative Confidence.
Kate has worked as a designer and design researcher at IDEO and as a Creative Director at frog design, both internationally recognized leaders in the field of design and innovation. She holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University. Her writing on human-centered design has appeared in GOOD magazine, The Atlantic, and The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science.
Gray has a Master of Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania, and has worked for architects Herzog & de Meuron in Basel, Switzerland. Gray served in the Peace Corps in Ghana from 2007-2009 where he worked on various projects, including teaching English, leading discussions on HIV/AIDS, empowering women, and building concrete latrines. After the Peace Corps, he started a social venture called the Global Latrine Project to develop prefabricated composting latrines for the developing world. Gray is an American Institute of Architects Henry Adams Medal Winner, and a University of Pennsylvania Social Impact Fellow.
Katie is the director of the SMU Maker Education Project and the Design + K12 iniatives. Katie is an educator by training, a maker by trial and error, a learning experience designer and a steadfast believer in the power of empathy to bring compassionate solutions to the messiest of human problems.
Katie draws from her experiences in a wide array of settings to develop and scale educational programming that matches her deep belief in the power of hands-on, real-world learning to inspire students to solve complex problems and feel empowered to make the world a better place.
Katie's first job at SMU was directing the Deason Innovation Gym. Before moving to Dallas, Katie worked to bring design thinking to K12 education at the Hasso Plattner Institute for Design (d.school) at Stanford University. At the d.school, Katie also lead the latest rev of the SparkTruck project, a mobile makerspace for kids.
Ask Katie about K12 education, maker trucks, screen printing, Human Centered Design and cooking.
Devon has more than 15 years of experience across education administration roles serving students, faculty and building partnerships. He previously worked in college admissions for undergraduate and graduate students at Colgate University and the Harvard Graduate School of Education respectively. After migrating to Dallas in 2011, he helped build a college counseling program with Uplift Education and most recently did employer relations and career counseling at SMU. Devon graduated from Colgate in 2000 and received his master’s in higher education from the University of Pennsylvania where he was a 2015 Social Impact Fellow. Currently Devon is an Ed.D. student in higher education at SMU and commitment-maker through the Clinton Global Initiative University.
Rickey Crum is the Lab Manager for the Deason Innovation Gym, a multi-disciplinary makerspace / prototyping lab within the Lyle school of Engineering at SMU.
Rickey’s educational background is in Aerospace Engineering and Architecture, and he graduated with his Masters in Architecture from The University of Texas in 2009. Before joining the SMU team, he worked as a senior architectural designer for CallisonRTKL, a large global architecture firm, where he focused on both domestic and international commercial retail and entertainment projects. Rickey was also the Operations Coordinator for Billings Productions, tasked with the design and fabrication of life-sized animatronic dinosaurs exhibited at zoos and museums all over the world! Rickey values both old and new technologies, and pushes to integrate both in his work. He has a passion for parametric design and digital fabrication, but you may also find him flint knapping stone tools in his spare time.