Networked for Change, NROC 2017
Education leaders take action to scale innovative practices
In 2016, NROC's marketing leadership identified "Networked for Change" as the theme of their upcoming 2017 annual member meeting. Blue Marble was tasked with developing a visual identity for the theme.
The team at NROC felt inspired by aspen trees and wanted to use an aspen forest as a metaphor to describe how being "networked" is a powerful force for change. Blue Marble agreed that the idea was a great fit for this collaborative group of education leaders. In order to execute the idea, the branding program would need to appeal both to young teachers and seasoned administrative leaders—not too trendy and yet not too staid.
"Networked for Change emphasizes how natural and human systems of connection encourage resilience and evolution. The NROC Network of members is a powerful force for change, unified by a commitment to honor and support all learners."
—Amanda Melton, NROC Marketing Director
For the campaign visuals, we paired a geometric look with an organic, hand-drawn illustration. We created the illustration of an aspen forest showing connected roots underground and a whole forest across a landscape. We developed the overall visual identity, including the Networked for Change logo and a style guide with defined colors, fonts, and graphic elements. Working closely with the NROC marketing team, the theme was integrated into conference activities, and the visual identity was applied across a range of media, including signage, name tags, agenda, tote bags, notebooks, a card deck, slide presentations, websites, emails, conference app, and more.
After eleven years in operation, the nonprofit NROC project is feeling on the cusp of a breakthrough. The group's flagship creation, EdReady (a math and English learning system), recently received another round of funding from The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Numerous states across the U.S. are integrating EdReady into educational practices with a goal of improving college graduation rates.
The Networked for Change branding has succeeded in capturing the mood of this nonprofit project as its membership works behind-the-scenes to re-think pathways to student success and improve outcomes within the U.S. education system. Beyond that, the graphic identity has brought delight and interest to the often dry and thankless task of action planning for large-scale educational programs.
For Blue Marble, it has been a real privilege to take part in such an inspiring grassroots movement and to see participation and momentum growing after years of hard work.
(click images below to view as slideshow, scroll down for video case study)
Video case study: NROC Annual Meeting 2017 Highlights
About NROC Membership / Annual Meeting 2017 Graphics
Creative Direction: Christine Fisher (BMC) / Amanda Melton (NROC)
Art Direction, Design, and Illustration: Christine Fisher, Blue Marble Creative
Photography: Jennifer Jones || Videography: Wiley Watson
Aspen concept: Terri Rowenhorst / Ilse Wolf || Video direction / project assist: Suzanne Wright Baumhaukl