Design Sprint Scholarship Winner Shares His Experience

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The winner of the Macmillan Learning Master Design Sprint Academy scholarship, Loverte Lakai, shared his experience with Create Labs to give us a snap shot of his journey. This is just the beginning for Loverte and we’re excited to see where he goes from here.

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My UX Design Sprint with Design Sprint Academy was amazing. It widened my scope of the practice itself and I had the opportunity to meet talented individuals along the way. 

I had not done UX Design before, let alone a Design Sprint. However, I was ready asking questions along the way.

The workshop spanned over 5 days and covered three overarching topics. Day 1 & 2 was the Design Sprint, Day 3 was the the Problem-Framing workshop, and Day 4 & 5 was the Simulation where we all implemented our new skills and received real-time feedback from John and Dana. 

First day was intimidating. To illustrate the first impression, I was at the Macmillan NYC headquarters in a 50 story building looming over the Financial District of Manhattan. I collaborated with professionals from blue chip companies who came to sharpen their skills some more. I had not done UX Design before, let alone a Design Sprint. However, I was ready asking questions along the way.

Everyone is heard, ideas are thoroughly considered, and viewpoints are expressed while ego is forgotten.

The first time I heard about UX Design was from Create Labs Co-founder, Abran Maldonado. He was a guest speaker at Henry Street Settlement, a career development center I was enrolled at this summer. He mentioned something along the lines of “a team who developed an app or service within a couple of weeks”. It piqued my interest. The first things that came to mind was “It would be interesting to watch a team do that”, “That must be intense”. 

The thing I like the most about how Design Sprint Teams is their effectiveness in teamwork. We’ve all worked in teams at school, but the teamwork at Design Sprint Academy is on steroids! Everyone is heard, ideas are thoroughly considered, and viewpoints are expressed while ego is forgotten. The result in working with a team is learning alternate ways to achieve the same goal. The process is very diplomatic. The energy reciprocated by a team who want to solve a problem just as much as I would, if not more, is amazing. 

My career path revolves around graphic design, illustration, and comic book publication. I’ve been excited to place my skills on the table whether it be an agency, or personally working with my clients to bring the best product or service possible. I found a working structure during the 5-day UX Design Course. It strengthened my deductive & public speaking skills, and exposed me to UI Design (User Interface Design). Through this scholarship, I’ve met great people, and have developed exponentially in my career building journey. 

Abran Maldonado