Schine Student Center Wayfinding and Environmental Graphics (Syracuse University) | Entro | World Design Awards 2022

Entro: Winner of World Design Awards 2022. For the newly transformed Hildegarde and J. Myer Schine Student Center at Syracuse University, Entro collaborated with architects Ashley McGraw, Mackey Mitchell and branding consultant Jack Porter to ensure the improved space became the “living room of the campus,” a comfortable environment for students to gather, eat, study, and socialize. The goal of the design team was to prioritize the principals of universal design and student-centred design to create a space that celebrates the diverse and inclusive atmosphere of Syracuse University.

The 108,000-square-foot renovation of the original 4-level building, which dates back to 1985, resulted in an open central atrium, a transformed dining experience, event spaces, lounges, meeting rooms, a campus store, and partial recladding of the exterior façade for transparency and connection to the Einhorn family walk. Entro developed the identification, donor recognition, and wayfinding signage for these varied spaces.


Syracuse University is proud of being Orange, and this was a key design concept used to connect the diverse spaces and student services. The vibrant, bold colours of the interior palette and wayfinding signage are playful and energetic, welcoming students and inspiring school spirit.

Further, the wayfinding program integrates with the architectural and interior design of the Schine Student Center to deliver what Syracuse University students wanted: an environment that is authentic, inviting, connective, and varied.

The original Schine Student Center posed challenges in terms of circulation, hard-to-find spaces, and limited accommodation for people of varying abilities. Architecturally, the central atrium was opened to welcome more natural light – a feature that draws people in and supports intuitive wayfinding. This central hub features large-scale ceiling graphics, visible from every floor, pointing the way to key destinations. Braille and tactile signs are adhered to the circular handrail and correspond with the ceiling directional signage.

Hard-to-understand alphabetical floor numbering was replaced by large, numeric level indicators accompanied by clear directories. Whenever possible, playful pictograms are used instead of written messages to engage the youthful audience.


Client feedback: “At the Schine Student Center, Entro was able to create clear, easily navigable, wayfinding and destination signage in a complex, multi-wing, multi-story building with many entries. The design is youthful and energetic. Syracuse branding elements were incorporated in a thoughtful way. The signage is designed to be simply fabricated and easily adaptable to future updates, which are inevitable in the campus environment. The large-scale ceiling mounted directional signage at the first-floor atrium is a student and visitor favorite. Since it is designed to be seen from the floor below, the design highlights the prominent destinations and reinforces the connection between floors and the overall unity which the architectural renovation was trying to achieve.”

Project Details



Project Name
Schine Student Center Wayfinding and Environmental Graphics (Syracuse University)

World Design Awards Category
Design Built (Schools and Universities)

Project Location
Syracuse, New York

Project Team   
Edmund Li (Creative Director), Nima Gopalakrishnan (Project Manager), Rachel Wallace, Shehrbano Akhtar, Donna Liu (Designers)


Photography ©Credit
©Halkin Mason Photography

Entro: With a legacy dating back 50 years and a team of over 80 in offices in Toronto, Calgary, New York, Sydney and Zürich, Entro is a world leader in the field of branding and environmental design.

Entro uses design to connect people to place. We call on design to fuel a dialogue between users and the spaces they inhabit – from hospitals and transit hubs to museums, corporate and educational campuses, and throughout cities. Our work gives places identity and meaning; it makes complex places navigable; it reveals the history behind new places.

Our interdisciplinary team brings together expertise in fields spanning art to neuroscience. We offer design services in branding, wayfinding, signage, environmental graphics, and exhibit design.