A cheerleader of possibility, Alex Gilliam is the founder of Public Workshop, an organization that redefines the way youth and communities participate as citizens and leaders in the design of their neighborhoods and cities. Alex fundamentally believes that great design, empowerment, innovation and having fun are not mutually exclusive. He creates inspiring curricula, transformative youth design leadership programs, innovative participatory community design tools, engaging events and thoughtful strategies that help people rethink possibility.
Alex has worked with numerous organizations, museums, universities, architecture firms and city agencies, including the Charter High School For Architecture and Design in Philadelphia, Rural Studio, Hester Street Collaborative, Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, University of Pennsylvania, University of Texas, Chicago Architecture Foundation, Landon Bone Baker Architects, Open House New York and the City of Austin, Texas. In addition, Alex is a national expert on K-12 design education with an emphasis on service learning and was the 2010 Field Fellow at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C.
Alex is a senior lecturer in the Industrial Design department at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, where he is helping develop the University’s social entrepreneurship program. His work has been featured on NPR’s Studio 360 and in magazines such as Metropolis, ID and the Architect’s Newspaper, as well as showcased on various company websites including Fast Company, BMW Guggenheim Lab|Log, Kaboom!, Core 77, Yahoo and NBC’s Today Show.
Alex’s recent work includes creating a green design leadership program in Chicago that trains young people to gather environmental data and collect the stories that substantiate design changes in their neighborhoods; developing unique design-build place-making events to better engage youth and community in a master planning process in Austin, Texas; designing a NEA-funded youth community design leadership program for middle schools in the Bronx; creating a full-scale building system that allows young people to prototype their own playgrounds in under-used public spaces; and launching Tiny WPA, a program to redesign and rebuild Philadelphia’s public spaces and micro-infrastructure through improvements initiated by youth.
Class Schedule, Fall 2016
|S,SU||08:30AM - 11:20AM||Applied Design Lab|