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Celebrating the Past with Today’s Technology

Joema Scott, Project Director
#Interactive Storytelling | Posted

Today, the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) is a center of intellectual vigor and economic vitality in the city by the bay. As the leading university focused exclusively on health, UCSF believes that tomorrow’s medicine requires an investment in innovation today. However, it was with an eye to the past that UCSF approached Phase2 to help produce an online tribute to the school’s 150-year history as a great San Francisco institution. We were happy to get on-board.

Considering UCSF’s prosperous history, the team came to us with a long story to tell: a timeline that included over 300 points, beginning with UCSF’s founding as the Toland Medical College in 1864. As a combined team of historians, designers, and developers, we had to work collaboratively to find a way to present a large quantity of information in a visually stunning but accessible way, under the time constraints of the rapidly approaching 150th anniversary.


With the goal to create a visual, long-form narrative, we trained the UCSF team to use an interactive publishing tool developed by Phase2 which allows non-developers to quickly and easily build out content. It was the solution they needed to chronicle not only UCSF’s past but the people who shaped it, as well as a snapshot of the people and facts of the institution today. The highlight is an interactive collage element to showcase Leaders in Life Sciences, also known as heroes in health and healing.


The result is a beautiful digital experience that connects the UCSF community with their rich history and modern milestones. It was a project which reminded us that when design and development are orchestrated in harmony, online monuments can be just as eloquent as their physical counterparts.

To learn more about how Phase2 is changing the digital strategy landscape by crafting dynamic interactive experiences, check out the publishing tool we designed for the Council on Foreign Relations, our thoughts on crafting content strategy for interactive storytelling, and why content strategy in higher education matters.

Joema Scott

Project Director