Partnerships and Outreach
The College of Computing and Digital Media (CDM) collaborates and partners with industry, community-based organizations, nonprofits, and educational partners.
For questions about partnering with CDM, please email
IndustryCommunity OutreachEducational Alliances
Over two School of Design courses, students researched, designed, and prototyped interactive experiences for the Wabash Lights, a proposed site-specific light installation beneath the Wabash Ave. elevated train tracks.
Formed in alliance with Cinespace Chicago Film Studios, CDM’s School of Cinematic Arts boasts a 32,000 square foot professional production facility where students learn filmmaking crafts and techniques steps away from productions filming on the Cinespace lot.
In 2017, CDM sponsored 6 undergraduate women to attend the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing conference in Florida.
CDM’s new makerspace, the Idea Realization Lab, provides the tools, guidance, and materials to craft ideas, learn from one another, and bring concepts to life. IRL partners with area nonprofits, institutions of learning, and corporate institutions.
The School of Cinematic Arts will begin its third summer partnering with the Chicago Housing Authority for a documentary filmmaking program. Teenage girls are introduced to basic theory, aesthetic, and technical skills to produce their own documentaries.
The iD Lab provides a space to foster and promote innovative development, helping companies bring creative, innovative ideas to life through top development, design, and data analytics.
DePaul’s partnership with entrepreneurial tech hub 1871 allows students, faculty, and alumni access to 1871’s space and programming. This allows students to learn from the experiences of successful startups and find partners to realize their own innovative ideas.
In 2016, DePaul opened a dedicated space at
1871, Chicago’s prestigious entrepreneurial technology hub. The collaboration gives DePaul students, faculty, and alumni access to 1871’s programming, special events, workshops, and lectures, and provides networking opportunities with industry leaders. Four academic units at DePaul are part of the collaboration, including CDM, the Coleman Entrepreneurial ship Center in the Driehaus College of Business, the College of Law, and Academic Affairs.
The School of Cinematic Arts teamed up with
Cinespace Chicago, the city's premier movie studio, to provide students with production experience in the midst of a working studio. The university's
dedicated space is 32,000 square feet and includes over 17,500 square feet of shooting space on three stages, multiple free standing sets, extensive lighting and grip equipment, a green screen cyclorama, sound equipment, scenic shop, editing suites, classrooms and collaboration rooms, and expansive storage and work areas.
Corporate Affiliates Program
Corporate Affiliates Program (CAP) provides an opportunity for companies to develop long-lasting, strategic partnerships with a college dedicated to educating the next generation of IT leaders in a wide variety of disciplines. CAP was developed to strengthen relationships between DePaul and industry partners, and to improve CDM’s knowledge of industry needs and practices. CAP partners gain early access and unique engagement opportunities with students, faculty, and staff. They are provided expanded opportunities to recruit high quality talent for internships and job opportunities, and are given access to facilities and resources for focus groups, collaborative research, and meetings. Bosch is a current partner.
DePaul Center for Data Science
DePaul Center for Data Science (CDS) is a research, educational and collaborative center that focuses on the applications of data science. The research focus of the Center is the development of innovative tools and methods in data mining, predictive analytics, and machine learning, as well as the application of these techniques in areas such as intelligent Web systems, social computing, business intelligence, healthcare, hospitality, marketing, image analysis, and more. The Center seeks out partnerships with industry as well as educational and nonprofit organizations to plan and conduct joint analytics projects that provide graduate students with an invaluable opportunity to work on real-world problems and gain problem-solving experience in data science.
Innovation Development Lab (iD-Lab) serves as a model for university and corporate partnerships in the area of technology innovation. The iD-Lab offers a space to build the bridges between DePaul and companies to grow into a leading technology innovation and research hub. Current work in the lab focuses on three primary areas: development of technology innovations projects with member companies; education through training, workshops, and practical experiences; and research on technology innovation. Partners include companies such as Abbott, Allstate, Bosch, CareerBuilder, CDW, and Digital Mint.
Chicago Housing Authority
We’ve formed a partnership with the
Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) to provide intensive six-week
summer programs in documentary filmmaking and interdisciplinary design to CHA teens. The documentary filmmaking program (which has run for the past two summers) introduces female high school students to the basic theory, aesthetic, and technical skills required to create a documentary. Two of the documentary shorts created in the program,
That’s Not Me and
Rise Up, were included in the Global Girl Media Film Festival.
Rise Up was also accepted to the Windy City Film Festival, where it won the Rising Voices Award and was nominated for the Best Documentary Short. This summer, Chaz Ebert paid the participants a visit and wrote about it in her online journal. The interdisciplinary design program (new this past summer) mentors and educates at-risk youth, facilitating ways for them to express their voice through a tour of tools and media, resulting in interactive experiences.
Girls Who Code
CDM has partnered with
Girls Who Code to host Girls Who Code Campus.
Campus offers a research-based curriculum designed to prepare middle and high school girls to consider careers in technology. CDM will be hosting three intensive two-week courses: Introduction to Computer Science, iPhone App Development, and Website Design & Development.
Grace Hopper Celebration
Each year, the School of Computing sponsors several undergraduate female students to attend the
Grace Hopper Celebration of women in computing. GHC is the world’s largest gathering of women technologists, produced by
Deep Games Laboratory at CDM is currently collaborating with
iThrive Games Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the research and development of games that promote teen thriving. The collaboration provides research opportunities for our game design students as well as development projects. Students get insight into the field of mental health, positive psychology and the affordances and demands of designing games for a real life purpose (e.g. to help teens thrive). They get a glimpse of what goes into strategizing game-based health care revolutions through iThrive's affiliation with Centerstone Research Institute. Students learn to not only consider a game’s design, its purpose, and target audience, but also efficacy testing and entrepreneurial aspects of disseminating games broadly to health care providers.
National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT)
The School of Computing is partnering with the
National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) as a Change Leader in the NSF-funded Learning Circles Project. The purpose of the project is to use evidence-based practices and methods for recruiting and retaining women.
Technology for Social Good Lab
The Technology for Social Good Research and Design Lab at CDM (TSG) brings together faculty, students, and other collaborators to design, build, and study tools with the goal of fostering equitable education and collective action in urban communities. Taking a human-centered approach, research projects draw from fields such as learning sciences, computer science, human-computer interaction, experience design, data science, urban studies, and psychology to address social issues, particularly in the areas of learning, human development, crime, and political engagement. Recent projects include projects by lab co-director, Denise Nacu and her team titled “UI Design Patterns for 21st Century Learning” and “Using Automated Log Coding and Data Mining to Understand Teaching and Learning.” Recently, lab co-director Dr. Sheena Erete was awarded an NSF grant for her project “Investigating the Use of Information and Communication Technologies in Supporting Violence Interruption.” Dr. Erete and students in TSG are partnering with
Cure Violence to design and develop a mobile application that provides violence interruption workers with the most effective intervention strategies based on data from over a decade of prior inventions and social support.
The Wabash Lights
School of Design faculty Nate Matteson and LeAnne Wagner taught a two-course sequence in collaboration with The
Wabash Lights, a site-specific light installation beneath the Wabash Avenue elevated train tracks in Chicago’s Loop. Students researched, designed, and prototyped dynamic, interactive experiences that utilize the Wabash Lights primarily as a public large-scale video screen, tapping into a variety of current trends including augmented reality, data visualization, and gamification. The experiences they designed are controlled through a variety of interfaces: mobile apps, public kiosks, existing public data APIs, and an innovative, motion- and light-based interface projected into pedestrian space.
Chicago Public Schools
Through several NSF-funded projects, CDM Associate Dean Lucia Dettori has partnered with Chicago Public Schools (CPS) to ensure that all CPS high school students take at least one relevant and compelling computer science course (Exploring Computer Science, ECS), and that middle and elementary school children are exposed to computational thinking integrated in other disciplines. This partnership, which also includes computer scientists from Loyola, UIC, and educational researchers from The Learning Partnership, has now been formalized as the
Chicago Alliance for Equity in Computer Science (CAFECS).
The Idea Realization Lab (IRL)
CDM's new 4,500 square foot student-driven makerspace, the
Idea Realization Lab, encourages the pursuit of thinking through making. Located on the third floor of the Daley Building, IRL has every type of creative equipment imaginable, from traditional woodshop/workshop tools to laser cutters, stereolithographic 3D printers, and sewing machines. It also houses two stop-motion animation studios. Following the guiding mission of DePaul, as well as the entrepreneurial interests of our students, IRL has undertaken an outreach program with area nonprofits, institutions of learning, and corporate institutions that includes the Chicago Knights, ChickTech Chicago, Chicago Public Schools, Caterpillar, and Makergirl. Recently, IRL partnered with Northwestern’s Garage and UIC, as well as seven community partners, to host the HACK2IMPACT series, culminating in a weekend-long hackathon for social good. Throughout the academic year, the lab hosts industry guest speakers, who are creators and innovators in their respective fields.
Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science
Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science (RFUMS) have created shared courses on bioinformatics and health technology, as part of an
alliance for health sciences education formed by DePaul University. Additionally, School of Computing faculty Dr. Daniela Raicu and Dr. Jacob Furst received a DPU RFUMS grant for their project “Functional neural mapping of food search behavior for C. elegans using genetic tools and computational modeling.”
The Second City
The Second City and DePaul University are collaborating to expand comedy education. Beginning in fall 2018, CDM’s School of Cinematic Arts will offer comprehensive undergraduate and graduate degrees in
comedy filmmaking. Students will attend classes at The Second City as well as within our expansive studio and classroom facilities at Cinespace. The curriculum gives students the opportunity to create, develop, and showcase their comedic voice and original material through a methodology honed over decades by The Second City.
CDM, along with the University Library and the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, is a co-sponsor of
Studio χ, a Center for faculty development that fosters and supports research at the interface between computing and humanities. Studio χ constructs networks of interested faculty, including many from CDM, to support and sustain their intellectual work and provide the technologies and facilities to help enhance teaching with digital methods across the curriculum. Six CDM faculty from the Schools of Computing and Design currently sit on the advisory board. The Studio is open to all faculty and staff in the DePaul community, and their
events are free and open to the public.