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Making the Most of Summer

It’s all in the rear view mirror now, but summer for DSI students was filled with learning experiences as well as fun. Here’s a run down of what the returning cohort did between years.

Sandy Ng worked at the NYC Department of Housing Preservation & Development as the Strategy, Research, and Communications intern; took part in NBC Universal Social Hack with Yuka Fukuoka, and Hrudaya Yanamandala, where they won third prize; and took part in Illicit Mind’s I STAND WITH IMMIGRANTS hackathon. She received good feedback and is still working with the team to implement the product created during the hack.

Ishita Jain interned at the Autodesk Foundation in San Francisco, which supports a portfolio of forty entrepreneurs and innovators working to address the environmental impacts of climate change. The Foundation provides funding, software, training, and related support, so these customers can have the greatest impact possible. Her responsibility was to evaluate the needs of these entrepreneur and innovator customers and pilot new in-kind services that Autodesk could offer to support them in their work. In addition to piloting two new services, she is working on a service design plan for the Foundation, from strategy to communication and through the on-boarding process so that customers can take full advantage of Autodesk’s current services.

Jinwei Hu did design research, UX and UI design on a new app which is planned for release next month, helped a friend launch a Bubble-tea and hotpot store in Toronto; and worked online for an organization serving Chinese people who live in New York City.

Amanda Finuccio took a road trip up the Hudson River, worked with NYC Small Business Services as their Neighborhood Development Division Intern, helped two filmmakers in Miami start a micro-budget film fund for South Florida filmmakers, made a mango cookbook, and ate every single fruit and vegetable summer had to offer.

Malé Sandoval and Nick Chan worked as social design fellows for InWithForward, a social design agency in Vancouver, BC. Their role was to embed research and development practices into social service delivery organizations; which included developing curriculum for frontline staff in these organizations, designing and facilitating learning sessions for the social service community, designing workshops and training material to facilitate implementation of the new R&D capacities and designing research tools and conducting ethnographic research with them.

Hrudaya Veena Yanamandala participated in the Design Thinking conference in Hyderabad, India, then returned to New York, where she interned as a Design Researcher at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Centre, working on an initiative for survivorship of cancer patients after active treatment that involved research and data analysis, and led to the creation of design principles that the Design and Innovation Group at MSKCC can use for future projects on survivorship. “This summer has been a summer of learning that gave me insights into the social design space, gave me a set of new connections. These opportunities also opened rooms for looking at social design in various angles. Looking forward to implement my learnings for future projects. Looking forward for school too for further learning.”

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