FAITH-BASED NONPROFIT AT PURDUE

Purdue Christian Campus House is a faith-based nonprofit organization on the campus of Purdue University that started as a very small organization 50 years ago and steadily increased in size. It was experiencing growing pains that were limiting its ongoing success. I redesigned every aspect of the organization to streamline operations and prepare for years of future growth.

 

Research & Strategy | User Experience Design | Placemaking | Identity Development | Website Design | Organizational Strategy | Campaign Development | Marketing Collateral

Campus House was known by many different things, and had no identifiable brand. I recommended consolidating all perspectives down into "Campus House," which was familial, descriptive, and accessible. I designed a logo that was a small, humble, house, but that had an additional subtlety as an arrow pointing upwards. The circle made it feel even more safe and unpretentious, and also gave it a collegiate emblematic connotation. The walls of the house/arrow are drawn casually to further this idea, as is the casual pen-like stroke encircling the logo.

I redesigned every surface of the building to fit with this brand and evoke relevance, creativity, sacredness, and community. In the main meeting room, I designed soft colors and textures with wood tones, and on the walls a series of hand-selected black and white photographs depicting the concept of church construction. It's the idea of breaking down the image of the church to make it accessible to people very aware of their own personal brokenness. Intermixed with images of churches under construction are homeless or disheveled people, but not just dejected people, images of people along the path of reconstruction themselves. Maybe there's a hopeful smile on a dirty face, or a busker making music out of his home on the street.

I edited the organizations many functions down into a three-word mission statement: REACH, PREPARE, and MOBILIZE, and adopted versions of the logo to brand each area of the organization in a way that was unique, but part of a larger family of logos. With this identity system and mission statement, I generated hundreds of pieces of marketing collateral from print and digital newsletters, a website, a strong social media presence, supporter-facing marketing, dozens of apparel designs, promotional items, a complete suite of office materials, and many others. I also story-boarded and directed multiple promotional videos targeted to college students over a variety of objectives and programs. As a way to further focus our marketing, I created a fictional gender-neutral amalgamation of every potential student in our demographic called "Joe Purdue." I asked my team often about "Joe" and updated how he evolved from year to year.

Then I converted a meeting room over into the "war room," covered the walls with hundreds of post-its, and lead strategy and planning sessions for weeks to turn over every facet of the organization. I re-designed the organizational chart around the mission, added an extra layer of oversight to manage the span of control, and created weekly/monthly/yearly communication feedback loops. I wrote a 50-page employee handbook from scratch covering all policies and procedures, and a similar handbook for the Board of Directors to follow. I designed a compensation algorithm, instituted a flex-time policy, and designed a qualitative and quantitative annual review process unique to the strengths of the organization. 

During this time, I began shaping the personnel and staff culture around the vision. I designed a multi-year mission and tactics strategy, which included developing a leadership tract involving over 300 participants a year. I also re-designed the nascent intern program, and built a fellowship tract within it. During my work with Campus House I hired over 50 employees, grew the permanent staff over five-fold to more than 25 employees, and graduated over 30 Fellows.

Being a nonprofit, Campus House was funded entirely through outside donations. I redesigned the development process as well, established a development division of the organization for the first time, increased the number of supporters to over 10,000, and more than tripled annual support. The organization garnered well over $10 million under my tenure.