Every year, our team participates in professional development activities through the Association for Communication Excellence, “Driven by science, communicating for change.”
The ACE community sponsors a yearly critique and awards (C&A) program for educational and promotional products created by universities in the land grant system (as well as similar institutions in Canada). This gives us a chance to showcase our favorite products each year and receive detailed feedback from other communicators and digital media professionals.
In 2022, six of our products won awards from ACE C&A:
Foods and Moves
Foods and Moves, our preschool suite of four apps which support active play among young children, won the top award (Outstanding Professional Skill Award) in its category, Information Technology, as well as a gold award in the Interactive Media Program class.
Our game prototype Unpeeled won a gold award for Innovative Use of Communication Technology. This project was designed not just to produce a digital media product but as a collaborative process with Extension colleagues at the University of Connecticut, to better understand how to position educational content in a game format, while serving the needs of a target audience. This process is described in “Unpeeled : Using a Game Jam to Enhance Extension Outreach.”
Blog posts about accessibility
For the first time, in 2022, we submitted a series of blog posts to the ACE critique and awards program. “Working Out Loud: Reaching Media Developers with our Work in Accessibility” won a silver award in the Writing for Targeted Audiences class.
This series of short, science-based videos about food safety, created in collaboration with University of Maine Cooperative Extension, won a bronze award in the Informational or Educational Video Production for External Audience class. Infotoons is being distributed in Maine and nationwide during Cooperative Extension trainings and on YouTube.
Spotlighting HRTM Career Options series
Our video unit created these promotional videos for NMSU, describing careers available for students who study Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management. The series won a bronze award in the Promotional, Recruitment, and Fundraising Products class.
Finally, our updated version of the Math Snacks game Ratio Rumble won a bronze award in the class Electronic Media and Audio for Diverse Audiences, based on its new accessibility features and inclusion of a wide variety of characters for players to choose from.
We are very proud of all of the videographers, artists, animators, programmers, writers, instructional designers, researchers and support personnel who worked together to make these award-winning products! Yay, team.
Written by Amy Smith Muise, Program Manager, Innovative Media, Research & Extension