For more than 30 years, Medill magazine students have collaborated to produce magazine concepts, including editorial content, design vision and advertising strategy. Some classes conceive their own magazine ideas. Others work with industry partners to incubate new ideas for existing brands. As technology and audience behavior evolve, the project does, too – with students spending more time developing online content and strategy. Students elect their peers into the key roles that exist at real magazines: publisher, editor, Web manager, market researcher. And every student creates content for both print and digital platforms. The team then presents print and digital prototypes along with the business plan to industry experts.
Some Medill alumni are lucky enough to see their hard work and creativity come to life. In 2008, Make It Better, a community resource for women dedicated to philanthropy, commissioned the Medill magazine project to flesh out its website and to create a print product. And in October 2009, the premier issue arrived in 50,000 mailboxes along Chicago's North Shore.
The Fall 2011 Innovation Project created Hinge, a tablet-native magazine with a playful tone that intertwines current events with their historical significance using culturally relevant, interactive media.