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Website Design & Development

Syracuse University Blackstone LaunchPad

First accessibility-compliant website for university led to increased student, mentor and donor interest.




Syracuse University Blackstone LaunchPad

Located in the Syracuse University Libraries, the Blackstone LaunchPad is a hub of innovation and teamwork for faculty, staff, student and alumni projects. With a global network of partnerships, Blackstone LaunchPad acts as a resource to help you learn, establish and grow your creative ideas and entrepreneurial ventures. SU LaunchPad ventures have raised more than $125M, and the space boasts a 50/50 female-to-male ratio, with a commitment to diversity, accessibility and inclusion.


Increase Audience Engagement

To ensure its sustainability, the SU LaunchPad needed to increase student and donor engagement, plus introduce a mentor program. But while the organization's website was intended to be the primary connection to all audiences by acting as both information hub and marketing tool, it was more of a deterrent; whole sections of the site didn't function, it did not adhere to responsive design standards, contact methods were unavailable, and the site didn't utilize the university's new branding. This reflected on the organization as neglected and outdated—not nurturing or innovative.


Accessible Website

Student, mentor and donor interest was directly linked to website accessibility and design, and so the SU LaunchPad needed a functional, responsive and accessible website that would intuitively guide all audiences to targeted areas of the site, turning leads into engaged participants.

Working with SU Libraries Information Technology team to establish security measures, website development and design work followed. SEO established clear delineation between student, mentor and donor audience content, while UX/UI design work focused on optimization for accessibility; the university's new branding included color combinations that do not comply with accessibility standards, and this required additional design considerations. Upon completion, accessibility testing and optimization were conducted with Libraries staff for adherence and publishing.


1st in Accessibility Compliance

The Syracuse University Blackstone LaunchPad website became the first accessibility-compliant website approved by Syracuse University. This led to increased student participant, mentor and donor engagement, plus new interest in funding.


Website Design & Development

Product Management​

Developed, set and managed project scope, strategic product objectives for both organization and end-user audiences, and milestones for work with client and IT team; product research and competitive analysis; built sitemap.

Product Development

Worked with Libraries IT team to setup and maintain adherence to university security protocols. External UX/UI audit; internal and owned product links established; implemented responsive designs; user testing and optimization.

Website Design

Used UX information hierarchy to design responsive, accessible website with WordPress software; conformed to university branding and approved templates, with consistent design elements across site, e.g. lead generation forms added to all target audience pages.

Content Management

Digital asset and content management system (DAM) organization; image sourcing, editing and optimizing for web. Crafted media management user guide for client.

SEO Optimization

New "search" feature added to website; writing and editing all new and pre-existing copy for both off-page and on-page website SEO, and accessibility.


Web accessibility checks using WAVE and Siteimprove Accessibility Checker; accessibility feedback and optimization with Libraries staff for adherence and publishing, making it the first accessibility-approved website for Syracuse University.


Visual Samples

Website Design & Development

First accessibility compliant website for university, complete with responsive design and consistent branding.

SEO Optimization

Website optimized for off-page SEO with appropriate content hierarchy, and on-page SEO with addition of new search feature.

Product Management

Developed, set and managed project scope, strategic objectives, and milestones while performing product research and competitive analysis.

UX Information Hierarchy

Information organized by content hierarchy, columns and tables, with lead generation forms added to all target audience pages.



Rare Talent and Brings 10,000% to Any Project

Geena Matuson was a consultant for the Blackstone LaunchPad at Syracuse University where she was instrumental with strategic planning, and the development of brand content and digital platforms.  She also served as a mentor to student startups across many disciplines as well as a judge for campus business plan competitions.  

She is a rare individual who fuses technology, design, and content creation, always from both a strategic and creative perspective.  Her fluency in digital tech platforms — from film to photography, art, graphic design, web building, and her wide breadth of sophisticated design and tools is impressive. Equally impressive is her competency in accessible design — a truly unique skill set that enabled her to build web platforms for us that passed high levels of rigorous review. 

Beyond building beautiful and technically expert digital platforms for us, Geena brought keen design thinking insight to each project.  From the beginning of each product, she developed a framework that encompasses both organizational strategic objectives as well as the user experience.  She created project scopes that were among the most professional I’ve ever seen over a very long career.  She was the consummate professional in terms of organization and communication.  Her work was always crafted with an exceptional level of attention to detail, and was flawless in terms of both form and function.  She delivered this exceptional work on time and on schedule, always focused on attentive client service. 

In short, Geena is a rare talent and brings 10,000% to any project.  She is a multi-talented innovator who is brilliant, creative, empathetic and fiercely focused on delivering quality.  It’s been a joy to work with her and we highly recommend her.

— Linda Hartsock: Executive Director, Syracuse University Blackstone LaunchPad



The Content Consultant

A Geena Media brand, The Content Consultant is Geena Matuson as strategic management, marketing and creative consultant for your content, your brand—you.

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