Interview with Emily Schleier,
UX Designer at Scripps Interactive Networks

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Emily Schleier is a graduate of the Ruby Cohort. Prior to joining Designation she worked as an Operations and Marketing Manager in Chicago.

Where do you work, and what’s your job title?
I work at Scripps Interactive Networks as a UX Designer.

Tell us briefly about your company.
Scripps is a lifestyle media company that owns and operates the Food Network, HGTV, DIY Network, Travel Channel, and the Cooking Channel. They develop media content for TV, the internet and emerging platforms.

Tell us briefly about your job.
I’m in the Media and Content Delivery side of Scripps. We develop and maintain enterprise applications that help our users deliver digital content to partners like Xfinity, Hulu, and iTunes—and, ultimately, viewers like you and me. In my department, I work with a UX designer and four teams of front- and back-end developers to ensure our applications are meeting user needs, making their jobs easier, and meeting business goals!

What did you do professionally before you started at Designation?
I lived in Chicago and worked as Operations and Marketing Manager for Novovino Wine Co.. While I focused mostly on the operations of the business, I was able to redesign our logo and website, which led me to the realization that I really wanted to do something more creative and design-focused on a day-to-day basis!

How did you hear about Designation? And why did you decide to attend?
I was interested in making a career move towards digital design or computer programming, and found that a bootcamp would be a perfect way to do that. Getting a second college degree didn’t really make sense, and my desire to skip the time and expense of traditional education led me to researching my other options. After a ton of research and shopping around for bootcamps in Chicago, I settled on Designation. I liked the curriculum and talked to a couple of alumni that had great feedback to share with me. I also loved that it was located in 1871 at the Merch Mart. I really respect what 1871 is doing in Chicago and loved the idea of being a part of that community.

How would you describe your Designation experience?
Intense! It was crazy-busy and the expectations were high, but it was fun and one of the most fulfilling experiences in my career/education. Jumping in at Designation was seriously one of the best decisions of my adult life.

What made your Designation experience unique?
My cohort! The people I worked with daily at Designation were passionate, knowledgeable, silly, and inspiring. One of my favorite parts about the program was learning from the people in my cohort. Everyone brought a unique skill set and perspective to the table and we really learned to collaborate and grow with each other.

Designation and its community taught me a totally new way of looking at problem-solving and positively affecting people’s lives through UX design.

What did you find was the most useful skill, tool, or experience from your time in the program?
I’ve been out of college for quite some time. While I’ve learned new skills and software applications since then, Designation and its community really taught me a totally new way of looking at problem-solving and positively affecting people’s lives through UX design. I also learned how to talk about and defend my design decisions to my teammates—and, more importantly, clients!

What are the people at Designation like?
Smart, passionate, friendly, and helpful. I was able to find teachers at Designation who taught in a style that resonated with me. It connected me with inspiring design professionals who were willing to take time to give me advice and point me towards the resources I needed.

How did you stand out from the competition in applying for, interviewing for, or getting this job?
I moved to Knoxville right after I graduated from Designation, so my established Chicago network was completely gone! Getting out to events and meeting people in the design and tech industry in my new city was everything to me. Networking and a solid portfolio absolutely got me in the door for an interview at Scripps. Talking about my design decisions and my experience designing for startup companies at Designation helped me get an offer.

What’s your favorite thing about being a professional designer now?
I’m getting paid to do the work I dreamed about doing! Figuring out how to solve problems visually and really affecting the lives of others through design is something I’m passionate about. I feel so lucky to have found my way to it.

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