Baruch Students Design Winning Posters for Smithsonian’s National Vaccine Awareness Campaign
May 17, 2021
Four Baruch College students have won a poster competition sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution as part of a campaign to promote Covid-19 vaccine awareness. Joey Criscione, Isabelle Izkiyayeva, Justin Chen, and Erica Wong, all graduating seniors, won $500 each for their posters.
The designs will become part of the Smithsonian’s official “Vaccines & Us” campaign. The artwork will be used for posters and will be made available as a free download to promote community awareness, outreach, and social media messaging.
The students created the posters in their senior seminar graphic design course, ART 5900, taught by Assistant Professor Joshua Mark Whitehead in the Weissman School of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Fine & Performing Arts. All of the students in the class sent in posters, and all of their names appear on the Smithsonian website in the list of campaign participants.
“We hope these posters can be used to encourage everyone to get the vaccine,” Whitehead said. “I’m so proud of these talented students and I know they’ll be using their skills to continue to make an impact on the world after they graduate.”
Joey Criscione (’21), a graduating senior majoring in business communication with a specialization in graphic design, reflected on how his experiences as a student at Baruch helped him with the design: “At Baruch, the art program is more valued than you might expect. The tight knit community – between professors in the department and the students – created a wonderful experience for me, and I’m proud of the work I’ve done. Walking away from my senior year with an extra $500 is definitely a nice bonus!”
Winning Artwork on Display
Criscione’s winning design places “V” and “Vaccinate” in red letters on a black background with the message: “Save a life starting at $0/month.” The design was inspired by streaming company Netflix, which Criscione noted many have turned to as a source of home entertainment during the global pandemic.
Izkiyayeva’s winning poster includes a stylized motif of flexed arms shaped like Vs in different skin tones, with tiny Band-Aids on the shoulders, and a “Let’s recover together” message.
Chen’s winning design in bold red-and-black lettering on a white background includes the words, “Protect your community friends family self…get vaccinated.”
Wong’s winning poster shows three smiling colorful figures and the cleverly composed message: “Strength in (Imm)Unity.”
All four students are vaccinated themselves and had a variety of reasons for getting the shot, including to protect friends and family and help to slow the spread of Covid-19. As Izkiyayeva put it, “I created the Lets Recover Together poster after being inspired by so many people posting their arms with the band aid, letting the world know that they are vaccinated and one step closer to getting back to normal.”