VCD/KSU Graduate Program

Peni Acayo

Penina AcayoHi, my name is Penina Acayo though a lot of people know me Peni because for some reason, my name was always pronounced the wrong way. I am originally from kampala, Uganda though I have been in the U.S since 2007. I was introduced to graphic design as a sophomore in College and ever since then, I have never looked back.

David B. Berman in his book, do good design, how designers can change the world (2009), poses a question that still lingers on my mind. He invites designers to think about what could become possible if designers used their power to influence choices and beliefs in a positive and sustainable way. Berman’s writing challenged me to consider what kind of designer I want to be and in what ways I want my design to influence others. I want to be a designer who not only does good design but who also does good with it. I have learned how to appreciate the design process that involves research, communication and creativity. As I keep on growing as a designer, I hope my work is creative, beautiful and possibly leads to social change.

Where did you do your undergraduate studies?
I completed my undergraduate studies from Goshen College in Indiana and I majored in Art with a concentration in pre-architecture and Graphic Design.

What are some of your interests?
Since High school, I had always been involved in Fine arts and crafts which I believe is where my love for design in general started. I absolutely love to work with my hands and am constantly finding ways to fuse my love for sculpture with Graphic Design. I also love sports and have always been a student-athlete since college and am currently on the kent state track and field team.

You may acces this link to my thesis process:

Peni's Thesis Blog

Latest entries from Peni's blog. Visit it here.


  • Thesis Paper on Ohio Links!!! September 17, 2013
    You can now find my final MFA thesis paper posted on OHIO LINKS. Filed under: Design Education […]
  • Saki Mafundikwa: Ingenuity and elegance in ancient African alphabets September 9, 2013
    Saki Mafundikwa: Ingenuity and elegance in ancient African alphabets Enjoyed this talk very much especially since there aren’t many thorough visual accounts of the story of various African Alphabets. Today, I am reminded of how the value in knowing who I am and how rich my culture is. As designers, we thrive on inspiration to […] […]
  • Setting a center stage for young Ugandan innovators February 21, 2013 Definitely love moments like these, when young people rise up and use their ability to think creatively and come up with viable solutions to everyday problems. Someone, told me a long time ago, that a situation becomes a problem if it has no solution and I am beginn […]
  • Uganda Design Professionals November 10, 2012
    I have been in contact with a few design studions, agencies that are willing to give me more insight into their day to day experiences as they operate in Uganda. I am really excited to correspond and talk to the people available on staff at these agencies and am sure they will provide me with […] […]
  • Design as a catalyst for learning September 3, 2012
    Another interesting read that has me excited about the potential for design to impact how students are taught in school today. This book presents a couple of case studies with stories from different schools whose teachers have successfully applied the concepts of cognitive and design problem-solving thinking into their curriculum. Design-based learning offer […]