The New Student Den / Najia Barclay / Nina Mettler

June 15, 2011

Problem: Students are intimidated to visit the guidance suite because they don’t want to be perceived as having problems.

Solution: The redesigned and renamed student den is welcoming and encourages students to take
advantage of all the services available from academic advising to psychological and health support.


Before: Bland, institutional space with white walls and nothing to welcome you to the guidance suite.

After: Bright colors, large text on the walls and positive messages creative an inviting, friendly atmosphere.


Brightly painted doors with fun pun signs encourage students to enter the center.


The words “welcome” and “hello” in various languages greet you and provide a recognizable entrance.


When you first enter “The Den” you see a vivid green wall with large positive messages.


Interactive bulletin boards line the hallways to help break the ice. Students, teachers and staff all submit answers to the monthly questions.


The corner previously occupied by a copier and printer is better utilized as a lounge area. As another way to engage students to take ownership of the space, the mural club can paint the walls to help create the relaxing zone.


A poster campaign throughout the school gives reasons to visit “The Den” including to Find out if you passed, Get condoms and Talk about how you’re feeling.