The Center for Design Thinking expands its consulting work into Greensboro

The Center for Design Thinking expands its consulting work into Greensboro with the non-profit Safer City Greensboro, an organization that aims to support its commitment to inclusive community engagement.

Throughout the past few months, Director of Design Thinking at Elon University Danielle Lake and student catalysts at the Center for Design Thinking have been working closely with the nonprofit Safer City Greensboro to provide equity-centered design thinking methods for addressing project team goals. Safer City has been working on establishing and expanding community partnerships and engagement.

Safer City is committed to empowering and increasing community engagement of citizens within Greensboro and surrounding communities.

Jamilla Pinder, a Culture of Health Leaders Fellow and assistant director for Healthy Communities at Cone Health, oversees a large portion of Safer City’s efforts. She said coming to Elon’s Design Thinking center “has been a great experience and change of atmosphere. We do a lot of community building, but being able to come into a new environment opens up a fresh perspective.”


Brainstorming session during a meeting of representatives from Elon’s Center for Design Thinking and Safer City Greensboro.

The Center for Design Thinking has provided equity-centered design thinking methods for addressing team goals through a variety of workshops. At the first workshop, participants from Safer City explored what design thinking is and grasped design thinking in action. Participants left with an understanding of how design thinking will be applied to their project and how their team could ethically and effectively increase engagement with various publics.

The Safer City team is confident that design thinking brainstorming techniques will help them bring events to life and reach their goals. A member of the Safer City team, Juanita, shared that she will take away the skills of “framing more intentionally, listening to more of the needs and desires of the people we are serving such that we are forward thinking and addressing current needs.”

The center is excited and honored to continue to help Safer City Greensboro thrive as a non-profit organization. Student catalyst Emily Joss ’23 who has worked extensively with these consulting efforts said, “We’re making great progress. We have been reformatting how they work as a cohesive group and generating prototypes to address community goals.”

To learn more about Elon’s Center for Design Thinking’s consulting work, visit the Elon By Design website.