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WillowTree, Inc.

WillowTree, Inc. is an America mobile application design and development company headquartered in Charlottesville, VA. WillowTree creates stable, efficient and flexible applications across all software platforms for companies ranging from startups to Fortune 500.


Vonage, a leading telecommunications firm, sponsored the inaugural OpenGrounds Challenge in Fall 2012. The Challenge asked students to imagine the next evolution of social messaging. Interactive sessions included full audience participation and interdisciplinary design laboratories.

Hearst Business Media

The partnership with Hearst Business Media began with a Design Gathering, bringing Hearst executives together with UVA Faculty to work creatively on challenges ranging from telemedicine and medical records to health access and communications. Faculty from architecture, the sciences, engineering and nursing collaborated with the Hearst Business Media leadership to develop techniques for diagramming ideas, participate in role modeling simulations, and brainstorm.

In addition to stimulating ideas that led immediately to new initiatives at both Hearst and UVA, the collaboration laid the foundation for an OpenGrounds Challenge in Fall 2013, which asked students to propose new ideas about how we can help people to make better choices about their health.