Student Spotlight | Gracie Gu, User Interface Design

By BrainStation August 21, 2018

UI Design Student

Meet Gracie, a recent university grad working in customer service.

Gracie is looking to pursue a career in design, and while she doesn’t have a traditional design background, she is building her portfolio and honing her skills through the part-time User Interface Design course at our Vancouver campus.

We asked Gracie about her career goals, and how she believes BrainStation will help her reach them.

BrainStation: What is your education and career background?

Gracie: I graduated very recently with a degree completely unrelated to design or computer science. Currently, I’m working part-time as customer service representative for a financial institution. During university I worked various roles in customer service which have taught me plenty, but now I’m looking to renovate my skill portfolio and learn more about the field of design, which is something I’ve always been curious about – yet too hesitant to pursue.

Which course are you currently enrolled in?

The part-time User Interface Design course at the Vancouver downtown campus.

What type of design role are you looking to pursue, and what about that role interests you?

I’d like to eventually start working as a UX/UI designer in either the food/nutrition, entertainment, or financial industry.

I love the problem solving aspect of the role and how it also allows room to exercise my creativity. Since I’m currently enrolled in BrainStation’s UI design course, I’ll likely be continuing with the full-time UX course in the fall.

How did you first hear about BrainStation?

I actually came to know about BrainStation through my efforts [to find] a spacious cafe to work on some readings and assignments for a UX/UI course I was registered in at the time. It was one of those free courses you could find online that gave you no more than a brief introduction to the fundamentals of the field. So that’s how I ended up at Quantum Coffee, and there I noticed a BrainStation ad for UX Design, which sparked my curiosity because that’s exactly what I was there trying to learn.

What sparked your decision to register for the course?

I decided to take this course to kickstart a career in the design industry. You can find a lot of great and informative resources online, but I didn’t think it could ever replace the real-life connections and in-person support you’d receive learning in a classroom setting with industry professionals.

What has been the biggest difference between BrainStation’s part-time UI course and the brief introductory models you had previously taken?

The biggest difference when you’re doing your own thing is that you have no idea if you’re learning enough of the right concepts. Often there is also no way of evaluating your learnings or putting those skills to the test. I had so much support from my peers and instructor at BrainStation, and this has helped me get on the right track.

How do you feel the BrainStation course is equipping you to move forward with your pursuit of a design career?

As someone who has little to no computer or graphic design experience, BrainStation has given me a solid foundation of knowledge and technical skills in the field. We [are learning] how to use Sketch, InVision, Zeplin and other industry standard tools, and were able to apply these skills right away in our final project.

How are you hoping to apply these skills in the future?

This course will open new doors for me, so the next step would really be incorporating these skills in an immersive User Experience Design course.

If you’re interested in pursuing a career in design, learn more about BrainStation’s User Interface Design course.