Faculty

Faculty

Maribeth Kradel-Weitzel is Assistant Provost for Academic Affairs and founding Director of the MS Health Communication Design program at Thomas Jefferson University. Prior to these roles, she was an Associate Professor of Graphic Design Communication for 15 years and founding coordinator for the Integrative Design Process course, an interdisciplinary, team-taught course in design thinking and teamwork required for all undergraduates in the Kanbar College. Kradel-Weitzel focuses on projects that provide equality for vulnerable and under-represented populations and led the initiative Posters Against Ebola which increased activism and support for Doctors Without Borders during the most recent Ebola crisis. She is a former President of the Philadelphia chapter of AIGA and a Sappi Ideas That Matter grant recipient. Kradel-Weitzel has lectured internationally on design thinking and interdisciplinary pedagogy and has degrees from Yale University School of Management, Tyler School of Art and The Pennsylvania State University.

Polly McKenna-Cress has been dedicated to furthering the museum field in many different capacities through her 30+ years of leadership in the design and interpretation fields and formal and informal education. She is deeply practiced in and dedicated to civic and socially responsible creative processes and community engagements that have been applied locally and in all parts of the world. She has managed and collaborated on more than 60 exhibitions, taught as an Associate Professor at the University level, provided leadership in different departmental capacities, and is an author, lecturer and workshop facilitator. She is recognized locally, nationally and internationally for her work and has given papers and conducted workshops in the UK, Colombia, Poland, China, and Argentina and presents at national museum conferences several times a year. In 2019, she was awarded a Fulbright Specialist appointment to work with Maloka Interactive Center in Bogota, Colombia. She was also appointed to the Senior Fellowship team for Drexel University’s Lenfest Center for Cultural Partnerships. She was a Noyce Leadership Fellow in 2014-15, and co-authored a widely influential book, Creating Exhibitions: Collaboration in Planning, Development, and Design of Interpretive Experiences (Wiley, 2013 and Fudan University, Mandarin translation, 2019). Ms. McKenna-Cress has held and holds multiple board seats and is partner in a branding, communication and exhibition design firm, Alusiv, Inc. She lives in Philadelphia, PA with her husband and three children.

Laurie Churchman is the principal of Designlore, a place for making, thinking and teaching design. She has over 30 years of branding and corporate design experience with work recognized by Communication Arts, Creativity, How Magazine, PDN:Nikon, UCDA, and others. She brings a Human-Centered Design approach to community and civic challenges, as well as teaches Design Theory and Design Thinking/HCD at Johns Hopkins, MICA and Jefferson University. In 2009, Laurie was honored to become an AIGA Fellow. She holds a BS from the University of Delaware, an MFA from Yale University and a certificate from AIGA/Harvard Business School Design Leaders program.

Dr. Michael Seitchik teaches Change Management for the MS Health Communication Design program. He has over 35 years of experience as a change agent, both as a senior officer at Jefferson Hospital and The Wharton School, as well as an external consultant for a wide variety of industries. His past change clients include AB InBev, Ace Hardware, Best Buy, Lenovo, McCormick, and Pfizer. He has developed and delivered programs for companies or business units based in Belgium, Canada, China, France, Japan, The Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Venezuela, and the United Kingdom. His healthcare experience includes leading a 4-year organizational change effort at Jefferson University Hospital that transformed the way the organization approached patients and executed its business strategy. He also was on the faculty at the University of Medicine and Dentistry for 5 years. His work has been recognized by The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and the Financial Times. His most recent publications include “The Goldilocks Approach to Team Conflict” (The Psychologist-Manager Journal, 2019), as well as co-authoring “So You Think You Can Innovate” (Rotman Management, 2017) which described research on leader behaviors that differentiated executives who successfully lead innovative teams from those who were not successful at leading innovative teams.

With a background in graphic design and interdisciplinary design MFA, Walker has experience working in all aspects of communication design from print, to environmental, to interactive, and information. She is a partner of the two women design studio Gold Collective based in San Francisco and Philadelphia. Gold's accolades include the Communication Arts award for Excellence in Typography as well as numerous other prestigious honors. Her work in information design has garnered international attention, including that of the New York Times, GOOD, and Print. Walker holds a BS in Graphic Design from Northeastern University and an interdisciplinary Design MFA from California College of the Arts. Her current teaching and research interests are focused on methods that involve a human-centered research process, experimental use of tools and technology in form making and typography, and a humanistic approach to the communication of information.

Dr. Edward E. Scott teaches Negotiation for the MS Health Communication Design program. His education includes an earned Ph.D. in Business Administration from Oklahoma State University, an MBA from Texas Christian University, and a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Point Park University. His research interests include minority retention in professional service organizations, audit team performance, and college and career success for first generation college students. He has presented his research at the annual conferences of the American Accounting Association, Academy of Management, and the International Association for Conflict Management. He is a Certified Public Accountant and his professional experience includes 5 years as an auditor with Deloitte, 3 years with the City of Pittsburgh Urban Redevelopment and Housing Authorities, and 13 years in the transportation industry with the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway (BNSF) and the Kansas City Southern Railway where he held managerial and executive positions in Accounting and Supply Chain Management. He has experience successfully negotiating various purchasing contracts for equipment and services and leading capital and operating costs reductions through strategic purchasing initiatives.