Rachel Park is a graduate of our inaugural Fall 2014 Design class and is a current student in our HTML & CSS class. After completing a degree in Systems Design Engineering at University of Waterloo, she returned to Toronto and pursued her curiosity in design. She now works at Kobo as a User Experience Intern and is the second contributor to our ongoing series, Alumni Stories. Before coming to HackerYou, what were you up to? I had recently moved back to Toronto from Waterloo after graduating from University of Waterloo for my first career as a Mobile Quality Analyst (QA) at Kobo. It seemed like a natural next step that I continue my role as a Quality Analyst because I’ve done several co-ops in university in both web or mobile Quality Analysis. Even then, I couldn't shake off the thought of exploring design and maybe more. What was it that drew your to HackerYou? Although I was happy with my work and where I was starting off, I’ve always been interested in design. I wasn’t able to try it out at school due to heavy set of must-take courses at university. So, I thought it would be great to pursue my interest in design and started looking for courses. The first thing that came to mind were nearby colleges, but I soon came to realize there were several things that I found troublesome including admission processes and class rigidity. I started looking at quicker way to get exposure to design and soon found HackerYou and its new course on design! What stands out to you as a highlight during your time in class? So this might sound strange considering I have 20/20 vision - but as each class went by, I learned to see. I was more aware of design around me and began to both appreciate and get inspired to know more about design. For example, in one class we learned to design business cards. From it, I learned that putting together a single business card requires great work of alignment, font changes, colour for accentuation, and more. Even the simplest business cards with just text and text alone probably went through several versions of font sizes and styles. I could go on but really, each class had its own highlights and kept me mesmerized. Coming out of the part-time course, where have you settled in the world? I changed my career! Learning about design made me realize how much I’m into it. While I'm still a beginner, I felt courageous enough with the work I produced during class to ask around for a chance to explore this field to my directors at work. From a role quite far from design, I am now a User Experience Intern at Kobo working my way to learning and applying design in the real world! Frank and Vivian were amazing in teaching me their insights to design and giving lots of encouragement to be where I am now. I couldn’t be happier.
Curious about our design class? We're offering it for a second time starting this May. Learn more here.