A magazine makeover is a complex feat, especially when the existing design is thirteen years old. The internet age has changed everything in the publishing world—how we read, what we read, when we read, why we read—and it has increased consumers’ demand for faster, more visual communication on a number of digital platforms. Legal education, the practice of law, and the Law School community have also been transformed since the turn of the century. We have new leadership at BC Law, new priorities for how to best educate our students, a new understanding of the necessity for global engagement and experiential learning, and new ideas and technologies for involving our alumni in the life of the Law School.
The time had come for a new BC Law Magazine, in print and online.
It has taken nearly two years to achieve this goal. We thought long and hard about how to showcase the distinction of our faculty, advance our reputation as a nurturing community and institution of excellence, and enhance your feeling of identity with the Law School. We surveyed 2,200 alumni; 87 percent said the magazine is their primary means of connection to the Law School. Out of the survey as well as a brainstorming session, focus groups, and countless conversations with members of the Law School community, themes and characterizations (engaged globally, intellectually rigorous, committed to social justice, collaborative, innovative) emerged that provided the basis for the redesign.
It helped that we engaged the Boston-area design firm Seven Elm and its creative director Robert Parsons to realize our vision for the print edition and then animate it for the web. The online edition launches later this summer.
As you flip through these pages, you will see the Law School community in a new way. We’ve enlarged the magazine’s physical size to provide a better platform for photographs, graphics, and the display of type. We’ve created Docket, an expanded front-of-the-book section, where points of view are expressed, the dean engages with thought leaders, and the relevance of faculty scholarship to legal practice is explored. There are stories about alumni in interesting jobs, and items that capture the whirl of speakers and activities. We’ve also expanded the number of feature articles. And, since survey respondents wanted more Class Notes, we dressed up the entire Esquire section to shine a spotlight on graduates’ intriguing pursuits and to deliver lots of news about alumni events, donor generosity, and more.
Let us know what you think.
Vicki Sanders, Editor
Photograph by Adam DeTour