A few weeks ago, I left my comfortable, everyday life in Philadelphia to travel by myself to Southeast Asia. I learned about the culture and history of the areas I traveled to, but the most important lesson I took away was that it’s necessary to switch up my normal ways of life in order to grow. When I came back to the States (and work), my fellow designer Dana and I were given the opportunity to – well, wouldn’t you know it? – literally switch it up.
My undergrad degree focused primarily on print design – much like three of the other four designers at Happy Cog. I admit at first, I really struggled to design for the web. After a while I took a step back and stopped limiting myself with the expectations of what it means to design a website, and started to think about how I could apply my print background to interactive design. I considered how interactions and cues on a website relate to opening a package, how publication design is similar to a content-heavy website in terms of type hierarchy, how printing techniques could inform web visuals, and more. This helped get me out of my initial funk.
I ’ve done it hundreds of times – I opened the glass door and shut it behind me. Just me and my opponent, enclosed by the familiar four walls of a squash court. Despite squash being a series of quick movements, each game manages to be 10% physical and 90% mental—a test of knowing what shots to hit and when to hit them.
Interns can make your life as an employer a little bit easier. They are the extra pair of hands you’ve always needed, and unbridled creativity fills their minds. Interns strive to be a valuable asset to your team and want an educational and enjoyable experience. Since they are only around for a few months, making the best use of both their and your time should be a common goal. Great interns put in 110% effort every day, but what can you, the employer, do to ensure that internships are valuable for both of you?