Alumni

Meet our graduates

If you’re looking to work with a graduate or curious to learn about everyone who’s come through Designation, meet them here.

Joel LaPointe
Junior Product Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Peridot
Tara Goderez
Experience Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Sapphire
John Kwoka
UX Architect
Chicago
Cohort: Celadon
Mary Heer
UX Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Ember
Joe Siwak
UX Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Amaranth
Kate Doornbos
Lead UI/UX Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Topaz
My-Duyen Nguyen
UX Designer
San Francisco
Cohort: Ruby
Nellie Dankmyer
UX Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Ember
Reena Ganga
UX Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Water
Philip Kuo
Freelance UX Designer
San Francisco
Cohort: Peridot
Irving Rivera
User Experience Designer
Dallas
Cohort: Quartz
Rachel Park
Visual Designer
Austin
Cohort: Amethyst
Marina Kopshyna Rampurkar
UX/UI Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Obsidian
Marlayne Dobill
Visual Designer/UI Developer
Chicago
Cohort: Lavender
Maria Faulisi
User Experience Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Water
Trinidad Araujo
UI Designer
San Francisco
Cohort: Lavender
Irene Jang
UX Consultant
Chicago
Cohort: Nectarine
Miguel Yupangco
Interaction Designer
San Francisco
Cohort: Celadon
Ryan Zawacki
Interaction Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Ivory
Christian Neill
UX Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Zinc
Taylor Dohmeier
UX Designer
San Francisco
Cohort: Fire
Jenna Reed
Freelance Designer
San Diego
Cohort: Kobi
Abhay Mistry
IT/Marketing Strategist and Designer
Brookings, SD
Cohort: Magenta
Brad Radle
UX Product Management
Chicago
Cohort: Bronze
Molly Chao
Director of Product Design
Chicago
Cohort: Ruby
Erin Chartier
User Experience Designer
Philadelphia
Cohort: Gold
Igor Milovanovic
Product Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Bronze
Samantha Avalos
UX Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Obsidian
Lainey Sargent
UI/UX Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Peridot
Tom Bzowski
UX Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Peridot
Andi Azry
Product Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Sapphire
Michael Yom
UX Designer
New York
Cohort: Diamond
Kori Yan
UX Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Fuchsia
Dushan Tharmal
Director, Product Management
Toronto
Cohort: Diamond
Mariana Garcia-Robles
UI Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Yucca
Melissa Manak
UI/UX Designer
Chicago
Cohort: Sapphire

Meet a few of our graduates

The Designation blog is home to dozens of interviews with graduates working as professional designers in the world’s best companies. Here are just a few of them.

Amy Ton

Amy Ton

Product Designer at Yelp

“It’s awesome to be in a space where you can share, collaborate, and critique ideas and concepts with your instructors and peers.”

Read Amy’s Interview
Cary Rolbiecki

Cary Rolbiecki

UX Architect at The Office of Experience

“The most important thing to understand is that Designation gives you the tools and resources to succeed, but what you get out of the program depends on how much work you’re willing to put in.”

Read Cary’s Interview
Zoë Sinner

Zoë Sinner

Product Designer at Facebook

“Designation broadened my fundamentals and taught me the skills to help solve design problems. And more importantly, it taught me to be a confident designer. All of these things I use in my current job.”

Read Zoë’s Interview
Rob Stone

Rob Stone

Experience Designer at Slalom

“The most important thing I learned was to lean on my peers. My cohort was full of people with a wide variety of skills. As a team we taught each other an incredible amount.”

Read Rob’s Interview
John Buckley

John Buckley

UX Designer at Frontend.com

“My favorite part of my experience was the atmosphere, passion and energy in the office; we were broken down and rebuilt together and the connections and camaraderie that comes with that is very special.”

Read John’s Interview
Kate Doornbos

Kate Doornbos

Product Designer at Interior Define

“I gained an awesome UI/UX job, solid portfolio, invaluable career advice, connections to companies, and access to a huge network of friends and designers across the country. I learned. a. ton.”

Read Kate’s Interview
Tiffany Yang

Tiffany Yang

Service & Interaction Designer at Fjord

“Designation gave me the language to speak intelligently about design.”

Read Tiffany’s Interview
Angela Kung

Angela Kung

UX Designer at Amazon Web Services

“I was lucky to be surrounded by hard working who pushed each other to be better. It felt like everyone really cared about their projects, and no one was ever satisfied with an easy solution. We weren’t afraid to challenge each other, which was awesome.”

Read Angela’s Interview
Jenna Passmore

Jenna Passmore

Senior Experience Designer at R/GA

“Learning to work on a team and facilitate conversations was the most important skill I learned in my time at Designation.”

Read Jenna’s Interview
Katarina Lauritano

Katarina Lauritano

User Experience Designer at SapientRazorfish

“Aside from the obvious practical skills and theory that I learned and now use every day, it gave me confidence in my abilities through the opportunity to work with real clients.”

Read Katarina’s Interview
Ji Su Hiatt

Ji Su Hiatt

Service Designer at Capital One

“Anyone can learn about the fundamentals of design in other settings. But at Designation we were given a chance to actually apply these principles in projects, which helped us learn to speak intelligently about design.”

Read Ji Su’s Interview
Tom Kutschera

Tom Kutschera

Visual Designer at E*TRADE

“I learned the proper steps required to create an application from scratch. I never really considered the process to create and develop an application prior to attending.”

Read Tom’s Interview

Grads go on to work for companies including:

  • Apple
  • Facebook
  • Google
  • IBM Design
  • Uptake
  • Yelp
  • Allstate
  • Bose
  • Capital One
  • E*TRADE
  • Nielsen
  • Walgreens
  • BoostHQ
  • LearnVest
  • Limbix
  • Outfittery
  • Recurly
  • Tallysticks
  • AKQA
  • Fjord
  • Huge
  • R/GA
  • SapientRazorfish
  • Slalom

Frequently asked questions about graduates

  • What’s the average salary for Designation graduates?

    We’ve found that graduates earn an average of $60,000–$65,000 in their first year after finishing the program. This number varies greatly due to location—it goes up to an average of $95,000–$100,000 for graduates in San Francisco, for instance, but also down to an average of $40,000–$45,000 for graduates in cities like Omaha. It also varies by industry, company type, company size, cost of living, and several other factors.

    For graduates who work as freelancers, contractors, or interns, the average hourly rate is $35–$50. 

  • Where are graduates located?

    We have over 500 graduates in cities across the United States, Canada, and Europe. The highest concentrations of graduates are in Chicago, San Francisco, New York, and Los Angeles. We also have multiple graduates in Toronto, Austin, Seattle, Boston, Denver, Salt Lake City, Madison, DC, San Diego, Minneapolis, London, Berlin, Dublin, and Istanbul.

  • What jobs are graduates prepared for?

    On the UX side, depending on the designer’s interests: UX designer, UX researcher, and interaction designer. On the UI side, depending on the designer’s interests: UI designer, visual designer, and communication designer. The skills gained at Designation form a partial but important foundation for additional roles like content strategist, information architect, UX writer, UI engineer, product designer, and product owner.

    In terms of job types, graduates are prepared for full-time salaried and part-time jobs, internships, apprenticeships, and contract and contract-to-hire roles. 

Take the leap

Join an upcoming cohort and make the best change of your career.