Entry 7: Working At Home

This is the first week to start working at home because of the Coronavirus disease and our supervisor Isana already sent us a mail about this issue and problem the day before. Isana also shared with us a Dropbox folder in order to let us upload all the drafts for our assignments that we did for today into this folder for review as a pdf version. After this, she send us the instructions for today’s assignments which we continue to work on AES Assessment Handbook covers that we did for the first week, but we also got a new assignment for our office which we need to design a logo and the full office name is: “Office of Educational Research and Assessment” or “ERA” for short. Our supervisor wanted to have two versions of the logo, one with the full name, one with the short acronym. In addition, she sent us a link for the City Tech Assessment website (AIRE) for an idea of the logo style they like and led us to look it up. So the difference between them was to use Brooklyn College imagery and colors as inspiration instead of City Tech. Finally, we needed to have five versions for the long name and short name logos should come in pairs, so five themes, ten logos total. 

So for these two logos that I design, the inspiration came from the logo at the City Tech Assessment website which gives an idea of the logo style that our supervisors like. 

But I also tried and came up with a totally different style for this logo. Sometimes don’t be afraid to challenge ourselves, and to our best to provide as many opinions as we can for our clients was not bad because as a designer we should always provide the best experience for them in order to show them what other opinions and chances we can have, so we never know if they will make a difference for them or not.

Entry 6: A Challenging Week Of Internship

This was a challenging week for our internship at Brooklyn College which we worked for three days around 20 hours about this week. On Monday, we started a totally new project that me and my partner both never did before which is the postcard. So in this case, it was totally new for us without any experience. Also, our goal in this project was having the students’ voices be heard and taking the student experience survey in order to make Brooklyn College better for students and their peers which let them check their Brooklyn College email for the survey invitation link. The first step we did was to search the size of the postcards at google, and we also searched for postcards designs from others as our inspiration. Then we tried to design our own postcards and came up with our own ideas, and did some drafts in indesign. Later, I had a meeting with our supervisors in order to discuss what direction we should go, which our supervisor did like my partner YanLin’s idea more compared to mine.

When we came on Thursday, we came up with a big project for the Brooklyn student survey including two posters, three boards, one banner, and two postcards, but all styles will keep the same as we discussed in the meeting on Monday. In addition, I tried to divide the work with my partner YanLin. For the poster, I did many versions in order to provide more options for my supervisor. For the board, I only did one version because we don’t have so many time. After we finished all the drafts for this project, our supervisor wanted something totally different at the end of the day and they wanted us to finish this survey project this week, that means we needed to continue working on this project on Friday. It definitely gave us some pressure for this project because the time was so limited and we needed to start everything over again. After work, we both tried to learn new skills online and did some personal work for this project at home with our personal time in order to prepare well for the next day even though we have very limited time for this project, but it was our responsibility to finish the whole project.


On Friday, we continued this project with some preparation, and we also worked hard at the job. After we finished some drafts, we had a meeting again with many supervisors, and there was one also from CityTech and she was happy with what we were doing. But they think we still need to improve more for the colors used in the design. Finally, I learned sometimes we need to know and learn what the clients really need and always balance each other, maybe to have more conversations might also help.

Entry 5: The Workplace Culture

The workplace culture at the IE Brooklyn College Office is very casual. Our attire was casual clothing with a very thick and warm coat because the weather was still a little cold outside when we came into the office. 

My day began at 9AM and ended at 3:30PM. In addition, we are allowed to bring coffee into the office and able to take a break at any time. Me and my partner YanLin who is another intern and my classmate as well, we both always go to the cafeteria for lunch and sometimes we would go out for drinks. For our lunch time, it all depended on the day’s workload, sometimes we got 30 minutes and sometimes it was around 1 hour, but no matter how long we have and I am very happy about it.

My supervisor Isana was very flexible with our work schedule, and our days were Monday and Thursday. She was very willing to switch our days or add more work hours for a work day. Finally,  if we needed a day off or have any issue that we cannot come to work. As long as we communicated with her, she was okay for everything with the schedule. She also created a phone message text group in order to contract with each other, so we are very free to talk in the group. 

Also, she always gave us space to let us get our work done and ask any questions if we needed help, so we always had open communication in the office. In addition, she will check our work in the half of the day, and give us some suggestions and feedback for the design, so we always need to make sure we got our work done at the end of the day. Finally, I like this work environment and the relationship with my partner and supervisor.

Entry 4: The beginning of the intern

My first week at the IE Office at Brooklyn College had finally arrived. I walked in and instantly felt welcomed. In addition, when there were some other professors or officers from Brooklyn College who came to our IE office, Isana Leshchinskaya who is our supervisor introduced me and my partner YanLin who is also an intern and my classmate in my internship class as well to them. The first day of the IE Office, Isana Leshchinskaya tried to fill out the “Internship Agreement Form”, “Internship Hours Timesheet”, and “Supervisor Evaluation Form” for us. 

After that she finished all the form, she assigned me and YanLin for two books’s cover, one was the “Academic Assessment Handbook” cover related to register office, student office, school library, etc; and another one was the ”AES Academic Assessment Handbook” cover that related to 76 offices for Brooklyn College, such as learning center links to the budget events, etc. We needed to design six versions for each one which total was twelve versions of these two handbook covers. The requirement of the size was 8.5”x11” with front and back, and the fonts should be easy to read. The biggest challenge for this project was the color limit which they wanted both handbook covers to use Brooklyn College logo’s red “maroon”. The other limitation would be only using graphic design with shapes to design these two covers, no icon, illustration work, or any complicated design which both covers should be as simple as possible. So I and my partner YanLin both decided to draw different thumbnails on our sketchbook. Then we put them into InDesign work and the result of the design that I came up with was not what I expected it to be, which I need more improvement and come up with more ideas to make everything work.

For the second day of the internship, I think we will continue to do the handbook covers, but I came up with a new project which is a poster for “2012 The Cuny Middle States Council Presents: Msche Symposium.” Isana didn’t know the size of this poster which I put the pdf that she gave to us and then put it into photoshop in order to check its size. Finally, we came up with 8.5”x11”. For this project, Isana provided us with some pdf of different colors for the same version for 2019, even though this poster also worked with graphics and shape, but it doesn’t have that many limitations for the colors compared to the first one. For this time, we directly skipped the step of the thumbnails because of Isana’s meeting, we needed to leave two hours and a half earlier than before. So we don’t have too much time to do every step in order to provide her with six versions for the same poster. In the end, she only picked three for each person. But I will say even though the time is very limited, we still do some great jobs. 


Finally, my typical day began at 9AM through 3:30PM. I came in, I was working alongside YanLin throughout the whole process. After we finished, we would show it to Isana for critiques. If she felt our designs needed to be changed, we would edit the indesign files, then she picked the best versions in the end from what we did. 

From this week’s internship, I learned we were always facing different challenges as a designer, but this is a point how we are here to help others to solve their problems in life. In addition, sometimes the result we come up with might not be what we expected it to be, but we should not be afraid of failure. Design is always learning from experience, and coming up totally different things in order to go to the next level. Finally, we are always growing, and learning by doing because we are not the only ones to do so.


Parsons CD Lecture Series: Carly Ayres Event

Today I will be talking about the event I went to in Manhattan, it was for public programs and events “Parsons CD Lecture Series: Carly Ayres”; and it was located at 66 W 12th St, New York, NY on February 21. I registered before I came and it was free. Carly Ayres is a writer and creative director based in New York. She is the founder of 100sUnder100, an inclusive community of hundreds of creative people under a hundred years of age. In addition, she was previously the co-founder of HAWRAF, an interactive design and technology design studio that worked to engage people in new & interesting ways. From sound-reactive identities to mirrored selfie posters, HAWRAF worked to help brands have better conversations. She also worked humanizing AI and evolving the Google logo in Google’s Creative Lab. From this event, I learned a unique perspective on practice; not only to learn from her work but also from the way she works. What drives her work and how does she sustain interest,  what are the various forces that shape her projects, and how does she manage conflicting interests in collaborations. 

In addition, what I learned from Carly Ayres is that everything is relationships, and we need to find our people, say hello to someone we don’t know or even though the person we never talk to in the class. Then bring them together and share what you know, you will get closer and closer to know each other. In addition, make sure we are always growing, and learn by doing. Additionally, never do something just because that’s the way it’s been done before. Be a Scrub Daddy, and diversify our inputs. So don’t be afraid to learn new things because more is more, the more things we try the more experience you get. Finally, All we can do is our best, don’t be afraid you are the only one to do so. Through Carly Ayres’s experience, she told us she never knew she could find a job or not for her major industry design after she graduated. But she still adhered to do what she liked, and after she graduated from school, she worked as a freelancer. Later she tried to build up different kinds of social networks, and that’s how she became more powerful. Something I found interesting was even though she is a very young lady, she is obviously successful at what she does and I can tell she is someone with lots of experience in the industry and the information she provided us was very valuable and useful, and all the hard work she put was very inspiring. After she finished her speech, she was letting us ask any questions we wanted, and I did get a chance to talk with her personally after the event which was pretty good communication and I will said she is a very nice young beautiful lady.

International Center of Photography

Date: 2/19/20

For this week, I checked out some sites such as the MOMA, the Cooper Hewitt, the Brooklyn Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art regularly host lectures and talks open to the public that relate to the design field for networking events. Finally, I decided to go to two events that can be fixed into my schedule. So today I will be talking about the event I went to in Manhattan, it was for community programs and events called “International Center of Photography”.

For the “International Center of Photography” event, I needed to buy the ticket before I came in, it was $12 for one student.  This is the world’s leading institution dedicated to photography and visual culture. Cornell Capa founded ICP in 1974 to champion “concerned photography” which is socially and politically minded images that can educate and change the world. Through these exhibitions, education programs, community outreach, and public programs, ICP offers an open forum for dialogue about the power of the image. 

During this event, we had artist talks and public discussions about different history backgrounds of documentary, photography and films. For example: Tyler Mitchell’s I Can Make You Feel Good, he is the photographer and filmmaker’s first US solo exhibition, utilizes the tools of documentary reportage, portraiture, fashion photography, art photography, and filmmaking to explore new ways of interpreting Black identity today. A Visual History of Hip-Hop with photography by documenting a cultural movement through portraits and demonstrating how photography helps create legends. The cult classic film from James Coupe’s The Warriors using 1979 as templates to explore contested notions of community, race, gender, and class in the twenty-first century. Selections from ICP Collection which the mid-twentieth- century works, it examined the role of images in enduring narratives about the Lower East Side, a densely populated, multiethnic, and modern neighborhood that is both quintessentially American and uniquely New York. 

Through these events, I learned about the importance of different cultures of history, and the influence for different generations of art and design. I still remembered one of the men who is a Spanish and lived in Jamaica. He was sharing his experience during the I Can Make You Feel Good exhibition, he told us people don’t think he is a Spanish and always treat him as Afircan American in this country because his skin color of black, and this influenced him a lot how other people treat him in his life. Finally, all the information and experience of the discussion were very valuable, it was a pretty good event to get to know different kinds of culture and people. It helped us as designers we should always create the best user experience for our users in life because different countries users and viewers might feel things differently, we should be clear who our audience is and how our design influences others. 

Entry 3: Who is the IE Office at Brooklyn College?

Date: 2/12/20

The IE Office is the Office Institutional Research and Data Analysis. “The mission of Office of Institutional Research and Data Analysis (IRDA) is to contribute to a culture of evidence at Brooklyn College by providing data on and analysis of our students, faculty, and staff to key campus decision makers. IRDA analyzes, distributes, presents, and integrates information used for long-range and short-range strategic planning, decision-making, and policy formulation at Brooklyn College.” Source: http://www.brooklyn.cuny.edu/bc/offices/avpbandp/ipra/index.htm

The Web page they include are:

  • IRDA HOME provides information and ideas about the Office Institutional Research and Data Analysis at Brooklyn College.
  • Surveys provides data surveys about the development, administration, and analysis of numerous student surveys over the years. 
  • Enrollment provides ongoing analysis of our students. Links to all of our preliminary and semester-end enrollment summary reports can be found here; including our annual Fact Book, and our historical enrollment analysis. 
  • Student Outcomes contains information related to retention and graduation studies. 
  • External Reports creates the process of collecting, analyzing and reporting institutional data to external data collection agencies. 
  • Planning provides a resource for all areas of the Brooklyn College community engaged in or interested in outcomes assessment and strategic planning. 
  • BC Fast Facts provides information about our president, location, mission statement, undergraduate tuition, graduate tuition, degrees, divisions, student enrollment, student body, student diversity, student achievements and activities, facilities, faculty, national accolades, grants, budget endowment, accreditation, alumni and motto.

Entry 2: The Interview

Date: 2/5/20

After emailing the IE Office at Brooklyn College, for a couple of days I got an email from them. They emailed me a schedule for an interview, and brought a copy of my cover letter, resume, and portfolio as well. At this time, I was so excited, but also nervous because I don’t know what kind of questions they will ask in the interview. In addition, I changed my resume layout completely, and fixed some of the content with my cover letter and portfolio as well in order to provide them a more professional look because all the pdf formats I send to them are very pressing. So I need to make sure I have everything ready and well prepared before the interview.

For the interview day, I went to the office in Brooklyn College on time, and Isana was the one who interviewed me at the beginning. Then two professors also came for the interview, they all looked through my profile website and personal jewelry website together on a big screen. In addition, we discussed some of the technology questions such as 

  • Are you familiar with HTML/CSS?
  • Do you use indesign or other software?
  • Do you know how to use excel, if not can you learn it from Youtube?

During the interview, they also showed me some of the graphic design samples they did in the past in order to let me know more about what they are doing and what they really need. Finally, they hired me for this internship and let me start from February 24. Also, at the end of the interview, I asked them a question about whether they need more internships or not? They said they need one more, so I contacted my classmates for this internship opportunity, and I believed they came for the interview later. After this interview, I realized how social networks are so important in our life because when they looked at my profile for advertising, one of the interviewers asked me who is my professor in communication design class, is professor Davis? I said yes, and she told me that they are friends who worked together before already. So we had a little bit of very happy communication that made me forget my nervousness. Finally, that’s how social networks work, everything is about making connections and it’s very powerful.