“ProNet’ – An application for Philadelphia’s Professionals | Janelle Roedan

Social Justice Topic:

For my final project, I want to develop an app for professionals in the Philadelphia area. The app will be named “ProNet,” an application that helps professionals grow the contact network. Users will be able to meet other people with the same interest and in the same profession in Philadelphia. When you are in the professional world, it is very hard to meet others who carry similar interests. With this application professionals will be able to use things such as “lunch time” to meet for a quick lunch and get to know someone in your field. The application will also have options to assemble different types of activities for Philadelphia professionals to meet. This is by no mean a dating app, or something like LinkedIn. This application is simply to make it easy for professionals to meet others who have the same interest, provide different types of activities, and meet people who might want to work with you.

App Design:

The application I intend to build is for professionals around the Philadelphia area who would like to expand their contact network, or those who are interested in having thorough conversations about similar interests with people within their field. Being that the application is only for professionals, I would like the app to be very clean and business like. The app will have a welcome page where only “ProNet” users can log into. The users’ home page will have tabs such as: My Profile, Friend List, Inbox, Search, Group Activities, etc. User will be able to have a profile picture and an album of professional looking photos. They will also be able to post about an experience with another professional or group activities. Professionals will only be able to inbox each other if they are accepted by the user. The application will have check-in access for those who choose to share what type of ProNet activity they are doing, whether a lunch meet, happy hour, or group meet. In order to become a member of ProNet, one must have a professional e-mail address and be able to include the website of the place where he or she is currently employed.

Connection to Field Research:

For my field research, I chose to observe a restaurant where hundreds of professionals from the Philadelphia area eat lunch every day. At first, I really wanted to have an application that just limits you from using your phone during lunch. Then, I thought it was a silly idea because sometimes people just have to work all the time and have to be very attentive to their e-mails. After Wednesday’s discussion about the different social justice apps, I thought that an app that can help professionals meet other professionals within their field is great because not many people have the chance or time to be able to go out and meet new friends. Socializing with new people just gets harder after you are out of college and in the professional field, so I thought this would be great and can be used all around the country if it goes live.

Peer-reviewed Scholarly Articles:

  1. Azcorra, A., Hutchison, S., & Hutchison, D. (2002). E-Net:Emerging Networking  Technologies. Global Communications Newsletter, 40(9), 1-4.
  2. Fuchs, C. (2010). Social Networking Sites and Complex Technology Assessment. International Journal of E-Politics (IJEP), 1(3), 19-38. doi:10.4018/jep.2010070102
  3. Ramaswami, R., & Neukermans, S. (2001). MEMS technology for optical networking applications. Communications Magazine, 39(1), 62-69.

Visual Design Project:

For my final presentation, I have two different ideas.

  1. Create a mockup of how the application will look like from a phone screen, using Photoshop. I am not the best at photoshop but I will try to see if I can put something together because I think having a mockup will really help others understand the idea behind the application.
  2. If I cannot figure out photoshop, I will then make my own drawings of what the application will look like and present my project on a poster.

Concrete Timeline for project:

I plan on doing tons of research on different types of networking application that are already out there. Learning more about networking and meeting people within your industry, I will conduct my own research by telling professionals about my idea and getting feedback. After I am done with all of the research, I will meet with Kristina  Devoe who will help me figure out if I am on the right track to writing a great research paper about my social justice application. I will conduct more research, start my paper, then finish by figuring out which application visual design I will use for my final presentation.


2 thoughts on ““ProNet’ – An application for Philadelphia’s Professionals | Janelle Roedan”

  1. This app idea is ok, but you need to connect it to social justice in some way. It is certainly possible to make that argument, but you need to figure out how you are going to. Research on social justice, particularly in relation to work or particular types of work might help with that. It will also be worth discussing the important to discuss the utility of this app given all the other networking tools that are available. Make sure your arguments are specific and use research to back them up.

    Related to that your research should somehow connect to what you hope this app will produce within the professional community. Research from organizational communication might help in that area. There is a lot of research on social media generally that will not be as useful, so focus on issues of particular concern to your target group.

    For the visual design component, make sure that whatever you create clearly communicates what the app is and does.

  2. Hey Janelle! I think that you have a solid idea for the app you want to design. The points you make about difficulties between work and social experiences opposite that are true. With that in mind, the app is brilliant in bringing together work life and social life. What makes it different is the blend that you are creating. All you have to do is describe the details of what makes this a social justice app. Also, I think that having to list the official web address of your place of employment could be problematic. It could become a tracking mechanism that employers decide to use on their employees. If the app is for primarily social usage, then employers shouldn’t be involved or linked to the app. (Just my opinion!)

    I think you would do good to use Photoshop to present the visual component, but this might be tedious work. An alternative is that you could present several simple drawings that show basic design and features of the app. Maybe choose 4 or 5 important points to depict.
    That’s all I have. Good job!

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