The 10 most Instagrammable places on campus

Located in Midtown, a neighborhood nestled between Detroit’s downtown high rises and New Center, Wayne State University’s location provides a prime vantage point to take in the city. However, the spectacular views aren’t the only Instagrammable sights on campus. With newly renovated laboratories, century-old buildings and the designs of world famous architects, there are plenty of ’gram-worthy spots to check out. Here are 10 of our favorites.

10. Gullen Mall

What used to be part of Second Avenue was closed off in 1964 to create a more walkable campus, and in 1979 it was renamed Gullen Mall in honor of George E. Gullen, who served as president of Wayne State from 1972-1978. Now this mall is not only the busiest walkway, but is the perfect place to stop and snap a clear picture of what’s happening on campus. Whether you focus on the landmark Fisher Building to the north or bustling Second Avenue to the south, Gullen Mall has a perfect view to capture all the action on campus.

9. Linsell House

Built in 1904, the Frederick Linsell House was designed by John C. Stahl, who graduated from Central High School (aka Old Main) and later studied building and design at night school. Stahl was only 28 when he designed the house for Frederick and Rosa Linsell, and he customized it to incorporate the fine woods and Georgian style requested by residents. The house now serves as the Office of the Dean for the College of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts. Beautiful inside and out, this historic home is an architectural gem on campus.

8. IBio

The Integrative Biosciences Center, a $90 million facility located near TechTown, is dedicated to eliminating the many health disparities that plague the city’s residents. With 200,000 square feet of lab and clinical space, IBio fosters a collaborative approach to research. The facility, which has breathed new life to a 1927 Dalgleish Cadillac dealership designed by legendary architect Albert Kahn, features a decidedly modern aesthetic while still showcasing elements of the architect’s original design. An Insta post of this building encapsulates both the past, and the future.

7. College of Education 

Constructed in 1960, the College of Education Building is the second of four buildings on Wayne State’s campus designed by the famous architect Minoru Yamasaki. The four-story building is known for its striking pointed windows, which make for an aesthetically pleasing addition to your Instagram feed.

6. Tierney Alumni House

The Tierney Alumni House was designed by architect Louis Kemper for Col. Frank J. Hecker, a man who made his fortune in the railroad business. Over the years, the structure has been home to Smiley Brothers Music Company and a law firm, and today — thanks to the donation from WSU alumnus Thomas Tierney and wife Elizabeth Carr Tierney — it serves as Wayne State’s alumni house. From the intricate woodwork inside to the large turrets outside, this urban mansion is not to be missed.

5. Top of Parking Structure 6.

Structure 6, which is located on the corner of Putnam and Cass, might not be what first comes to mind when you think about Instagrammable spots on campus. However, insiders will tell you that if you go all the way to the top, you’ll be met with an amazing view of campus below you. This unique location provides a different angle to capture campus beauties like the Maccabees Building and Old Main.

4. 5057 Woodward (Maccabees Building) 

Another Albert Kahn design, 5057 Woodward — aka the Maccabees Building — was built in 1927. One notable early tenant of the building was the radio and TV station WXYZ, which broadcast popular radio programs such as The Lone Ranger, Challenge of the Yukon and The Green Hornet to listeners throughout North America. After WXYZ left in the late 1950s, the Maccabees Building became the headquarters for the Detroit Public Schools until Wayne State purchased the building in 2002. This historic building is certainly Instagram worthy all by itself, but the stunning views it provides of the Detroit Public Library and the Detroit Institute of Art put this location toward the top of our list.

3. Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences

The College of Pharmacy was founded in 1924, and it later evolved into the College of Pharmacy and Allied Health Professions. In 2001, it officially became the Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences that we know today, and in 2002 the college moved into its new facility on Mack Avenue. Lucky for us, this five-story learning and research space stretches high enough to provide a view of the downtown skyline that’s worth sharing.

2. Old Main

Old Main, the “Hogwarts” of Wayne State, was originally built in 1895 as Detroit Central High School. Warriors are likely familiar with David Mackenzie, who was the high school’s principal. During his time there, Mackenzie began to introduce post-secondary classes that started the beginning of what would become Wayne State University. Whether you post a frantic selfie of your first time getting lost in the many hallways and “changing staircases,” or if you share a magnificent shot of the Romanesque Revival architecture, Old Main is a crown jewel that will get you instant likes.

1. McGregor Memorial Conference Center

Completed in 1958, McGregor Memorial Conference Center is the first Yamasaki–designed building at Wayne State. Intended as “a structure that is in harmony with both man and its environment,” the center continues to be a place where students can relax or study on beautiful days. This incredible space is too good not to share on Instagram, making this spot No. 1 on our list!

Do you agree with these Instagrammable spots or think you know some better ones? Share your pictures of campus for Photo of the Day at

Have you met Emily?

Emily ConnellyYou’ve probably seen her hosting several Facebook Live events, or maybe you’ve followed along with her on Food Fridays or even seen her interview Gloria Steinem (OMG that really happened!). You’ve seen her from afar, now’s your chance to get to know the student who gives life to the Wayne State social accounts!

Emily was hired as a Student Assistant in another part of the Marketing and Communications office a few years back and we kept hearing how awesome she was. When the opportunity arose for us to work with her, we jumped on it and Emily now has been splitting her time with Social Media Marketing and Event Marketing for the last year.

Emily quickly became an integral part of the social team. Almost instantly she was the single voice on Snapchat, the sole manager of Photo of the Day and rocking everything and anything else we asked of her. I joke that we could use the hashtag #WhatCantOurInternDo because she does everything so well and just about always exceeds our expectations.

Snapchat screen capture

As someone who loves DIY and being creative, she uses those skills weekly in this position. On National Flip Flop Day (Yep, that’s a thing), she crocheted our Little W Flip Flops. Another day she spent carving a pumpkin with the new #WarriorStrong hashtag. She’s taught herself to create stop motion movies that have been used on Snapchat, Instagram and as promotional videos for Financial Aid. Seriously, #WhatCan’tOurInternDo?



View this post on Instagram


Happy National Flip Flop Day! I’ve got mine on and I’m ready for some summer fun. Anybody up for a game of Coinhole?

A post shared by Adventures with “W” (@adventureswithw) on


Emily Connelly came to Wayne State via Bay City and Grand Blanc. She was craving more culture and diversity in her life and knew Detroit and Wayne State is where she needed to be. Now, heading into her senior year as a PR/Political Science major, she is excited about the opportunities that are in front of her.

Q and A with Emily:

Q1: What do you love about social media?

A1: Everyone has a voice, it’s all equal. Anyone, no matter who they are can go viral.

Q2: What do you hate about social media?

A1:  That it perpetuates hate speech and that people are surrounded by others with the same idea.

Q3: What was your favorite class (so far)?

A3. Research Methods with Rosie Jahng. At first, I was scared of this class. Communication majors usually don’t want to do math, but it wasn’t bad. It was actually cool. Made me think about doing what Rosie does or maybe going into research. I don’t think that will happen, but it did make me think about it.

Dr. Bradley Roth (Political Science) is really awesome too.

Q4. What do you like best about the PR program?

A4. The PR program is a tight-knit group. You wouldn’t think for undergrad, but it is. You get to go from class to class with everyone and get to know the group. Shelly Najor is our leader and guides us through.

Although we can’t bear to think of losing her when she graduates (even though that is why she is here) I personally look forward to seeing where her degree and can-do-anything spirit takes her!

Emily hosting the petting zoo Facebook Live at the bookstore

FestiFall 2018

Coming to FestiFall after Convocation? Here’s what you should know:

When and what is it?

FestiFall is Tuesday, August 28 and showcases more than 500 student organizations, campus departments and learning communities to incoming students and guests. During FestiFall, students have the opportunity to meet the dean of their college or school, eat a picnic lunch, and explore WSU’s learning communities.

Dress for the weather

It’s going to be hot!

Grab the SWAG

Most tables are giving out valuable student SWAG. Come early to get the good stuff. Don’t forget to search out the tables who are giving out bags, you’ll need them to carry all the loot!

Don’t be shy

Everyone is here to help. If you have a question, ask.

Sharing your email address or signing up for more information is not a commitment, it just starts the conversation.

Stop by the Social Media table

  • Take your Back-to-School pic
  • Grab your Social Media Challenge (if you choose to accept it)
Getting ready!

Make new friends and have fun!

That is what the day is all about!

August 2018 – CMS update

This month we are focusing the CMS update on self-paced CMS training.

Canvas course

We are excited to announce we have a new option for CMS training available on the university’s learning management system, Canvas.

The training can now be found in the “All courses” area of Canvas and is open to anyone with an active AccessID.

Browse for the “Web Communications” course.

Canvas course screenshot

The training will evolve over time

This is only the first step in the online CMS training platform. We will over time be adding more areas for accessibility, emails, events, forms, images, etc.

If there is an area that you feel would benefit from online training, please email

In-person training is still available

In-person training is still available by signing up at: We try to offer group training every few months especially as new units start interacting with the CMS or other university tools for the first time.


Hiring: Student Web Intake position (part-time)

The Web Assistant will report to the Web Content Administrators and will be the ‘front line’ contact for incoming Web requests through email and phone calls.

This person will take the initial request, respond and gather any additional information, complete the request (if small) or elevate it to a staff member when additional assistance is needed or it is a larger request.

The position does require some existing knowledge of how the Web works, basic HTML and familiarity with web-based content management systems.

The ideal candidate will have:

  • Good written and phone abilities
  • A basic understanding of HTML
  • A basic understanding of Web usability
  • Comfort editing pages in a web-based content management system
  • Experience resizing and optimizing images for the web
  • The ability to detect patterns of requests to create training material and document common responses to frequently asked questions
  • The ability to follow verbal and written directions with an eye for attention to detail

More about the position:

This is a part-time position, requiring 15-20 hours a week in the Marketing and Communications office, located in 3100 AAB.

The volume of requests varies per day, the average is 30-40 with most taking only a few minutes to complete.

The Web Assistant’s role in a request:

A request will come into the system and depending on the detail of the request:

You may need to follow up by email or by phone with additional questions

Once all information is available:

  • Determine which page(s) need editing.
  • Determine how these pages get edited (there may be multiple systems involved), which may require asking some questions internally about the page setup.
  • Ensure the primary contact is looped in on all changes.
  • Facilitate necessary changes (May take a few minutes to a few hours)
  • Gathering follow up questions/answers
  • After completion, follow up to let the requester know the change has been completed.
  • While completing requests it will also be required to document common responses for consistency and to speed up future requests. It will also be required to work closely with the Web Communications team.

How to apply

If this sounds like you, email your resume and a cover letter to with the subject “Interested in the Web Assistant position”.

July 2018 – CMS update

This month we want to highlight a few places to reference the overall style, techniques and the direction we are going with the university Base template.

The university CMS organizes the pages, files, promotions and assets without a website design. These assets are then implemented through a template that is unique to each area of campus while still fitting into the Wayne State’s identity. This “style” is what controls how elements look on Web pages.

Screenshot of the base website styleguide

Where our future style live and evolves

All new sites start from a ‘base style’ that is maintained and visible at

A living style guide of all starter templates and components can be found at

When each site is created, we take a ‘snapshot’ of the ‘base’ style guide. Which means as it evolves, new styles may not be usable on your website. It is used as a guide to show where university style is going and helps us plan for the future.

The style guide for your website

Most sites created in the last two years have their own style guide that you can view via Add/Edit Pages in the CMS at /styleguide. For example:

Each unique template is defined

Using the navigation in the style guide, it’s possible to see all variations of the website with fake text (lorem ipsum).

CLAS homepage layout

A few other examples:

Some areas have code examples

Mouse clicking button to expand code area

Areas that cannot be created directly in the CMS page editor require special HTML code that is specific to each site. That code is available in the style guide by clicking the corresponding “See code” buttons.

Some sites do not have a “style guide”

Sites originally created before 2016 do not have a /styleguide directory and unfortunately there is no “living style guide” for the site. The styles at the time they were built directly into the templates. If your site falls into this category and you have questions about possible styles, please email us at and include the URL of the page/site you’re looking to expand and what you’re looking to do with it.

The multiplying effect of shaving 600kb off ⚡️

We’re always looking for things that have a multiplying effect.

A little bit goes a long way is just one of those places. It gets ~700,000 page views per month so changes to the homepage impact a lot of people. results for

Scroll map of wayne.eduOnly 25% of people scroll

Internally and externally the homepage is used as a primary resource for the Login, Search or Top menu (in order of interaction).

Because of that, only 25% of people scroll past the initial fold.

Studies show a fast webpage gets more interaction.

The bulk of the file size (and thus perceived speed) of is from images. Using the existing infrastructure, we already compress each image as far as possible. Taking the homepage down from historically ~3mb to ~1.1mb.

Deferred loading of images

Using the technique that Rob implemented on Base to detect if an image is on or near the screen to trigger actually loading it, this was then transitioned to the CLAS website by Tom and proper by Jenny.

The result is a ~600kb reduction in initial page load on, from ~1.1mb to ~600kb depending on the hero image.

Animation of content loading

This change at scale

75% of 700,000 visits = 525,000 pageviews do not scroll
525,000 times 600kb savings = 315gb savings per month!
10.5gb savings per day.

The CLAS homepage had similar results for end users, but with fewer page views per day, the impact is not as visible.

Bandwidth costs can get expensive for our users. This change not only helps locally but globally, the impact is great without impacting the user experience.

IGTV – InstagramTV – Photos, stories and now long form video

Another place to post content on Instagram?

Yep! We went from Feeds – to – Feeds and Stories – and now we have – Feeds, Stories and Channels!

Instagram Feed example
Instagram Feed
Instagram Story Example
Instagram Story
IGTV - Channel example
IGTV – Channel









Over the weekend Instagram rolled out IGTV — a new video channel to watch longer format video. Depending on your status within Instagram you will be able to upload video from 15 seconds to an hour long, but most accounts will be limited to 10 minutes max.

Why is this important?

With 10 minutes of uninterrupted storytelling time, the big picture is now an option. Microstories are great (don’t get me wrong) but sometimes a deep dive is what you need and telling that in one long segment as opposed to eight tiny ones is a better user experience.

What’s the downside?

With this being brand new, there might not be a downside but I do have two concerns.

You now have three content areas to create for one social platform.

  • It took users awhile to check both stories and their feed, will adding a third be an issue?

  • Facebook stories have not been adopted by users, could this be similar?

Shooting in vertical

  • That means what you create for IGTV won’t work well in YouTube and vice versa. Will this be a barrier to new content?

What’s the upside?

With this being brand new, there might not be an upside…but of course, there is an upside!

What users will do with their channels and their expanded time options will be exciting! I have a million ideas in my head from “Five minutes with our Faculty” to “Trips around the City.” Just the newness of the platform will spark creativity!

How to get started

Use the Instagram app or the IGTV standalone app. Both are available for IOS and Android.



Create the Channel using your Instagram account and you can start uploading video right away!

Selfish word of caution

I repeatedly say that Instagram is my happy place. It’s not a place for politics or news; for me, it’s been about the beauty I see around me and a reminder to not only see it but to stop and enjoy it, take a picture and share it with the world. I fear that  IGTV will change this platform. Although I also thought Stories would have ruined Instagram and it didn’t. I love scrolling through stories. Most accounts create stories that are on-brand, on-message and enhance the user experience. Fingers crossed IGTV goes in the same direction.

Instagram grid
Wayne State Instagram Feed

A journey from Foundation CSS to Tailwind CSS

All of our frontend websites start with this base repository which can be viewed at It has evolved in many ways since its closed source version to the new public version 5. One thing has remained the same, the whole time is being dependent on the Foundation CSS framework.

We used Foundation when we first started exploring responsive design in 2012 for these reasons:

  • The grid was easy to use and understand
  • Fast scaffolding for wireframes
  • Included many Javascript packages out of the box that we found useful (accordion, offcanvas, sticky header)
  • Ongoing support of bug fixes and new major versions
  • The framework didn’t have an opinionated style like Bootstrap

Why did we move away from Foundation?

The biggest drive for us to switch to a different framework was how hard it was for us to upgrade from even minor versions of the framework. It’s not a knock on Foundation as we consider it a wonderful framework. The custom CSS/JS we wrote on top of everything played a large role in making the upgrade a difficult task. The slightest changes to their default CSS or javascript components made it extremely time-consuming for us to realign base to accommodate for those changes. A related issue is the cascading part of CSS. While it’s extremely useful, it’s also a large hindrance to the maintenance of a project long term. Adam Wathan wrote a really good blog post explaining this very issue.

What did we move to?

Tailwind CSS. The concept of using a utility-based framework is having a class name that does one CSS property and value. You can think of it as doing inline styles on each element, but what makes it different is you control all the values of colors, sizes, widths, and heights in a single settings file. This creates more consistency, better naming conventions, and a pattern to your CSS names.

What it allowed us to change

Once we switched over to Tailwind CSS it allowed us to start looking at replacing other parts of Foundation that we relied on. Here is a list of changes:

What are the stats for the childpage template?

File Base 4 Base 5
requests 14 9
load time 1.481s 1.117s
css 18.1 KB 10.4 KB
javascript 27.9 KB 21.2 KB
html 6.4 KB 8.4 KB
total size 133 KB 82 KB

We managed to lower the overall size by a 38% reduction! The only file that slightly increased is the html which was to be expected since we introduced a lot of new classes.

We’re excited for the future of our base site project knowing we can easily swap out any packages now or upgrade them without affecting the entire site.

Simple CSS hover effect using transition property for button with arrow

To create a simple button animation you can use the following code.  In this case we are using the Foundation framework to add simple style to the button.

Here are the results:

See the Pen Simple Button with arrow hover animation by Tom Krupka (@tomkrupka3) on CodePen.dark

Here is the code below:

// HTML Output
<a class="button arrow">Read More</a>
// Button CSS Code
a.button {
    margin: 20px;
    font-size: 20px;

.arrow {
    color: #0c5449;
    background-color: #f6f3ed;
    margin: 1em 0;

    &::after {
        display: inline-block;
        padding-left: 8px;
        content: "279E"; // arrow right unicode
        -webkit-transition: transform 0.3s ease-out;
        -moz-transition: transform 0.3s ease-out;
        -ms-transition: transform 0.3s ease-out;
        -o-transition: transform 0.3s ease-out;
        transition: transform 0.3s ease-out;

    &:hover {
        color: #0c5449;
        background-color: #f6f3ed;

        &::after {
            -webkit-transform: translateX(4px);
            -moz-transform: translateX(4px);
            -ms-transform: translateX(4px);
            -o-transform: translateX(4px);
            transform: translateX(4px);

The result is a very simple hover button, with a subtle animation to catch the users attention. This effect can be used with any Unicode character and don’t forget to add your vendor prefixes!