Yesterday, I was in Umeå Institute of Design for a lecture about UX and ID. I talked about the relationship between these fields and the future of design in this context.
As always, I was very impressed by the creativity oozing out from every inch of the school and its students, as well as the competence of the staff. I spent almost 3.5 hours before and after the lecture, reviewing student portfolios. Amazing work and great skills all over. The depth of the content and the research, together with the topics chosen, made every minute worthwhile.
If I had any general observations from this experience, it would be that there is a new generation of designers on their way who care deeply about the impact their work might have on this world. So much so that most of the questions posed after the lecture were concentrated on how to deal with situations that might potentially be unethical or too profit focused at the expense of the user or environment.
It was delightful also to see that many students in the portfolio review were more focused on getting relevant feedback on their work more than selling themselves as potential employees.
I owe a big big thanks to Pernilla Sandberg and Marije de Haas for arranging the whole logistics and accommodating my last minute requests, Thomas Degn for his amazing hospitality and constant stream of chocolate and coffee appearing on my desk as well as the timekeeping, Niklas Andersson for inviting me over as a speaker and of course, all the students for making my day.