THDC-IHET is an engineering college in Tehri. It boasts an amazing environment for students to become scholars, close to nature. The institute holds a great vision of creating a unique education experience for the students – much different from any other government engineering college in India. The website is one such effort in that direction. Though it will not directly impact education, the website portal features will support it.
While evaluating the existing website to understand who they are in a bit more depth and how they have been presenting themselves till now, we realised they were the spitting image of any other government institution. To move from that to an international outlook would require a 180 degree shift.
Their vision for the website was to make it much more useable for the students, faculty and the members of the institute. A lot of the way things happened in the university were dated, required a lot of paperwork. So they wanted a tool or a way for them to make some of the processes efficient by making them digital. Another part of the redesign was about reflecting a truer identity and the personality of the institute. There was much more happening than what was reflected.
For this, we took up the challenge to iron out the creases in the experience of the website which is visited by parents, prospective students, existing students, faculty members etc…
We prioritised this so that all the people belonging to the university could feel proud of being a part of such an institution before beginning to use this as a platform. We wanted them to have a buy-in or a bias towards using it. Otherwise however useful the platform could be it would just not have the same appeal. So we decided to first launch a reimagined outlook of the institute which would be truer to the capacity and potential they held.
Even though North India has many colleges/institutes in the hills none of them utilise the kind of advantage they have. A place like THDC-IHET situated atop Tehri hills would be an ideal place for dreamers and scholars. And much more than this story, on our visit to the campus when we met the director we realized a few pillars that stood out for us from the vision that they were moving with – their vigorous approach towards research, building industry relations and providing international exposure that benefits their students. We chose these to be the main elements of the story for the website.
Since this was a remote project, and it is important to imbibe the vision of the project; we solved this challenge by spending a few days on location. It helped us understand how things were different and in coming up with ideas of what the website would feel like. Visiting them also set a precursor to the platform we would build within the website.
Changing the design perspective for the existing audience
Design thinking principles for requirement validation