The Virginia Theological Seminary is the country’s largest and second oldest Episcopal school. Cortina Productions designed and produced a custom interactive digital wall to welcome visitors to the VTS campus and honor the Seminary’s financial supporters.
The “Saints & Stories” interactive wall provides a dynamic display of images and information to celebrate the history of the Seminary and offer special recognition to donors of the 2023 Bicentennial Campaign. Through an engaging and intuitive touchscreen interactive experience, the wall also enables visitors to gain a better understanding of the importance of the Bicentennial Campaign and the rich 200-year history of the VTS School.
Dean and President of the Seminary, Rev. Ian Markham, shares his experience working with Cortina Productions. “Organizations and institutions depend on their friends who, through their generosity, make projects possible. Finding a way to honor these essential and precious supporters is important. In the 2020s new ways are emerging to do this work of recognition. Working with Cortina has been a delight. Our interactive wall, with names, pictures, and quotes, is so much more thrilling and interesting than the traditional static plaque. The future of recognition has arrived. It is important that we all start participating in that future.”
The interactive experience utilizes Cortina Production’s custom story explorer software, which enables organizations to present their history as well as recognize individuals using various engaging layouts. As visitors approach the VTS interactive wall, they will see an animated attract screen with a waterfall of images highlighting the robust history of the Seminary, the exhibit title “A Seminary’s Saints and Stories”, and a “touch to learn more” button. Once they interact with the screen, a menu appears that offers deeper exploration of stories about the history of the Seminary, including The First 200 Years, Campus for the Third Century, People & Programs, and a Bicentennial Campaign Donors & Volunteers section that highlights the many supporters who have contributed to preserving the endowment for generations. Visitors can also filter donor profiles by location or name and a dynamic search feature allows visitors to search through the collection using an on-screen keyboard. To ensure that visitors can stay connected to the Seminary, a Support feature allows visitors to register their email address for ongoing updates and news.
By offering visitors an opportunity to directly interact with an organization’s history and its mission, it provides them with a meaningful and lasting connection to the institution.
John McCarthy, Director of Interactive Design at Cortina, describes his take-aways from the project. “In close collaboration with Linda and the rest of the VTS team, Cortina Productions has created a visual and highly interactive experience that shares the rich, 200 year history of the Seminary. The interactive wall also provides financial supporters to be recognized for their contributions which are vital to sustaining the mission of Seminary. Our content management system allows the Seminary to easily update the interactive wall with new content so that the experience will continue to be fresh for visitors for years to come.”