Verena Paepcke-Hjeltness, IDSA

Verena Paepcke-Hjeltness, IDSA
Associate Professor of Practice in Design
University of Texas at Austin

Verena Paepcke-Hjeltness is an Associate Professor of Practice at the University of Texas at Austin’s School of Design and Creative Technologies. Her work focuses on the diffusion of design thinking and doing practices in design and non-design-oriented disciplines, with a focus on exploring visualization as a gateway to sketching and creative confidence, as well as design-ability. She has taught in Germany and the U.S. at the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam, The Ohio State University, Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), Drexel University, and Iowa State University. She frequently facilitates workshops on sketchnoting, design thinking, and strategic planning in both academia and industry.


Statement of Candidacy for Education Director

Let me introduce myself, explain why I’m running for this position, and describe what I would like to do.

Who am I, as a designer and educator?

For 20 years I have been in the industrial design arena, working in Germany and the U.S., both in academia and practice.  I teach many different topics, ranging from introduction to process and methods to professional practice, industry-sponsored courses, and more. As a practitioner, I focus on facilitating design thinking methods and strategic planning sessions.

Why am I putting my name in the hat?

In conversations over the past few years, a pattern appeared. There is a growing disconnect and concern, one that starts at the roots (the value of IDSA is not clear to all students) and reaches to academics and practitioners (there seems to be a desire for more active knowledge exchange). 

What I would like to do in this position

Empower the student chapters by giving them a visual platform. Encourage practitioners to adopt a student chapter for a certain time frame (this idea was developed during discussions at the 2018 Midwest District Design Conference in Chicago). And provide a connected space during the International Design Conference (IDC) Educational Symposium, inviting practitioners and academics alike to share and publish case studies, research, and their processes. 

If you vote for me

Please be ready to be actively involved if you vote for me. I will reach out and ask for input, feedback, and participation of the entire IDSA community.