S.T.E.A.M. Day

Pittsburgh, PA | November 2013

S.T.E.A.M. Day

Bringing art back into S.T.E.M. education


A new academic system called S.T.E.M has become the model for primary and secondary education. This new effort is meant to promote knowledge and discipline not only for a student's success, but also because there fields are deeply intertwined in real world in how students learn most effectively; however, areas in the arts have been excluded as resources are diverted into S.T.E.M. subjects. As of 2008, a record of 80% of arts education in public schools has been cut, and the first subjects removed are fine art, music, and foreign languageDespite studies pointing to the importance of creative fields for developing and strengthening cognitive skills or even how the arts have helped to preserve and even shape cultures around the globe, it is addressed as a nonessential subject. 

As a response to the lack of arts in 
the education system, an initiative addressed as S.T.E.A.M. advocates for including creative subjects as an integral component of learning. My challenge was to create an identity system and promotional material for a hypothetical conference to encourage the movement. 


In my initial research, I asked myself what fine arts were a combination of the STEM fields: music as an engineering of sound and instruments that stir emotions, cooking a blend of chemistry and culture, architecture as a form of engineering and sculpture, and so on. All of these areas could exist and function without art, however human beings are naturally creative.

The reoccurring theme that surrounded education without art was as if removing an essential part of an experience. My original idea was to run with iconic pairs: Batman without Robin, Mustard without Ketchup, Simon without Garfunkel, etc. This approach felt lacking in the core message of how art was necessary; however, my text and color explorations from this approach lead me to the blending of primary colors.


The concept of my final work relies on the dependence of colors Red, Yellow, and Blue. These colors can certainly exist alone, but blended together they provide a full spectrum. In the same way, the S.T.E.M. subjects are important and core tenets of education, but blending them together with the Arts creates a richer experience. 

The final deliverables for this project included a poster series, postcards for the event, and a website including a lineup of events and resources for S.T.E.A.M. Day.