Bringing voices together
An existing relationship
Letting visitors engage on their own terms
Cornell’s Brand Communications department created the new Cornellians brand, an exciting starting point for us.
Based on user research (done by our friends at Mule Design Studio) and requirements outlined by the advisers, we built a design system that included the following content types:
- Class Notes: bimonthly columns written by class correspondents featuring news submissions from alumni of all classes.
- Updates from Alumni: readers contribute personal posts, which are then reviewed and curated by the editorial staff for publication on the site.
- In Memoriam: brief notices of alumni deaths that have been reported to the university.
- Books by Alumni and Faculty: a beloved, legacy feature from CAM.
- Perspectives: a platform where Cornell community members can share their first-person essays on various topics, regardless of whether they are directly related to the university or not.
The idea behind such a varied collection of content types was to allow readers to engage with the platform on their own terms, in a two-way fashion.
A place for the community, by the community
Over the past few years, organizations have slowly turned comments off on their platforms because of the increasing overhead of moderation. However, Cornellians saw them as a necessary community-building feature and took a bet. And it worked. Read a few stories and scroll to the bottom to see peer-to-peer interactions. Cornell alumni are curious and passionate, and their comments are vibrant examples of the Big Red spirit.
Cornellians is launched
Cornellians was extremely well received from day 1. Offering a variety of alumni profiles, messages from President Martha E. Pollack, expert advice, articles about campus history and traditions, student and research stories, Class Notes, and other updates on alumni news, it is a great way to stay up-to-date on campus life today.
Since Cornellians launched in October 2021, our continued partnership has led to new exciting features like Ask the Expert or puzzles and quizzes.