2020 Fall Mentor Session

Meet Our Mentors

Meet our Spring / Fall 2020 Mentors. We are so lucky to have them share their passion and expertise.

Dana Chen
Collaborating on a Group Project:

Making a Difference Through Design

Design is a powerful thing and when implemented right, it can be a huge impact on us and the world around us. You can be that designer. We’ll spend our time learning and discussing how to make a creative impact while being inspired by various local non-profits.

Brian Peterson
Career Development:

Create and Design Your North Stars

Whether you want to change the world, get that next job, or looking to get that raise you deserve, self-advocacy and goal setting are flexible frameworks to equip you to execute and materialize your badassery. If you are just starting in your career or are looking to set your next…

Jon Hensley, Stephen Riley
Design Thinking:

Learn How to Solve Complex Problems with Human-Centered Design Methods

Design is much more than a beautiful user interface, an efficient information architecture, or even an innovative interaction design. It helps solve larger human issues when it is oriented around a human-centered design framework, making the experience of design much…

Yvonne Hangsterfer

Uncover the Journey of a Self-Employed Designer

Many 9-to-5 workers dream of self-employment, but it remains a dream for most of them. As designers, there’s a good chance you’ve already worked as a freelancer—you might have built a website for a family member, designed a logo for a friend’s business, or picked up odd jobs…

Sarah Doan
Kickstarting Your Career:

Design Your Career Path

The job market is tough – whether it’s your first job or a new career direction, setting yourself up to land a new role isn’t easy. Navigating the industry can be challenging, but it should be approached with a sense of adventure and confidence! Building a portfolio and resume is the first…

Ananta Prayitno, Tom Glass
Portfolio Improvement:

Breaking Down the Philosophy of Portfolio Development

No matter your practice, there’s often a huge gap between the amount of time spent on a project and the time spent making sure it shines in your portfolio. Whether you’re trying to find a new gig or just refining your work, Ananta & Tom want to bridge that gap and help you get to know…

Allie Serd
Portfolio Improvement:

Improve Your Storytelling in The World of User Experience Design

Rambling in your interview can make you seem a little unorganized, you want to come across as passionate and take your audience on an intriguing journey of emotions and lessons in the course of your work. Stories connect the information to emotions and thus allow us to relate…

Jeff Blanchard, Cecilia Morales
Experience & Product Design:
Focus on CX, Product & Innovation

Learn About MVP’s that Matter: Designing Products for Maximum Value

Designing for communication, marketing and visual deliverables is important. But how do we design conscientiously and effectively for innovative and impactful products? How do we gather evidence to both gain confidence in our design direction, and also the necessary means…

Katie Ess
Experience & Product Design:
Focus on Branding & Storytelling

Discover the Role of Branding in Product Design

In a world of MVP, prioritization, and feature roadmaps, branding often gets overlooked within product design. Take a step back and and rediscover the role of branding. You’ll focus on ways to add back the value of brand storytelling and the feeling of a product. You’ll work…

Jonathan Eyler-Werve
Experience & Product Design:
Focus on Design within Agile Product Development

Grow Your Career by Designing Like a Startup

Jonathan’s session’s will support mid-level designers who want to land roles as senior product designers in a balanced team setting. These roles require competency in Design Research, UX Design, Interaction Design, and Visual Design, while working closely with product managers…

Alyson Kayne
Professional Development:

Transform into a Chameleon Designer: Learn How to Adapt to Land Your Dream Job

Ready for your next move, but don’t know how to get there? Alyson will share her experience working as a graphic designer in many different fields and share how she was able to adapt and rebrand her talent to fit new corporate molds. We will cover the gamut of being a designer in the …

Carmelina Piedra
Professional Development:

Practice Ethnographic Research in Real-Life Environments

User Experience is all about solving problems. In order to do so, user research can be used as a tool to make sure we are solving the right problems (uncovering gaps through research) and doing it right (validating what we are designing works best for our users). Join…

Mentor Program Group Events

Over the course of the program, in addition to mentor sessions, participants will have access to private curated group events that are specific to only The Mentor Program. These events range from private workshops, studio tours, panel talks, interactive events, portfolio reviews, and more.

Special Thanks to:

Edwin & Ryan from Mondo Machine for their video resources and time shooting our mentor videos, Guerrerofor sharing their workspace to shoot all of our mentor videos, All of our Spring Mentor for dedicating their time, One Design Company for creating our program branding, and to Flatiron for sharing their space for our Kick-Off event.

Finally to our AIGA Mentor Committee: Leslie Presto, Ray Lasky, Janelle Pluta, Melody Pohla, Hayley Gallet, Crystal Bahena, Larissa Krysiek, Phil Brown, Emily Fairchild, Chelsea Weis, Megan Jackson, Michael Green, Kelly Knaga and Buddy Boor for creating and producing the overall vision and experience of this program.


If you have questions, please email Co-VP of Mentorship, Leslie Presto at presto@chicago.aiga.org