SJSU's Reimagined Washington Square: The Magazine
Magazines > Online Magazines
Best of CASE District VII Award
Institution: San Jose State University
Title of entry: SJSU's Reimagined Washington Square: The Magazine
About this entry: Following the pandemic, we decided we needed a new look, feel and approach to storytelling, and we wanted to share and celebrate those stories with a broader community. We therefore transitioned Washington Square from a traditional alumni-only magazine to a university and alumni magazine. We leveraged our social networks and did a poll on whether this should initiate a name change. The results indicated that we should retain the name Washington Square. So we produced a new design, font and color scheme, and then presented the reimagined Washington Square on a new digital platform (Foleon). This platform helped make the magazine more cutting-edge and innovative, especially for reaching new audiences, as we are the public university of Silicon Valley.
Our approach to storytelling changed also from a theme-based magazine to one that focuses on telling the best stories of our community. We concentrated our efforts into four storytelling buckets: Spartan Spotlight (transformative profiles coinciding with our #1 Most Transformative University ranking from Money magazine), University Initiatives, Features and Community (stories of giving back).
The impact of the redesign was felt immediately. More than 31,000 page views in the first month and dozens of positive comments submitted by alumni, campus community members and others confirmed that this integrated approach was successful. This redesign Washington Square will include a print edition in the summer of 2022 and ongoing development of the online version to include web-exclusive content and additional multimedia elements. This magazine also furthers our Transformation 2030 university strategic plan goals.