Like many others, Jason Moosikkamol was lost after college.
Jason graduated from Northeastern University in Boston with a BA in Communication Studies in 2015. He then bounced between several content and digital marketing positions, before eventually forking out on his own path.
That path just happened to be co-founding an award-winning non-profit magazine, Native Tongue. Then, one day, Jason had an appointment with a design thinking consultant that changed everything.
In the meeting, they identified user needs for Native Tongue’s audience, created empathy maps, and brainstormed solutions.
At this point, I realized I wanted to do what he did—give ideas life.
"I felt like I’ve always had a good eye for design, but I never really learned the tools to create before Designlab," Jason says. "After graduating from UX Academy, not only can I give ideas life, but I can make them look very good as well."
Now, Jason is the Lead Product Designer at Blueprint, a startup developing software and solutions that simplify the impossible.
"Joining a start-up at such an uncertain time could’ve gone either way, but I’m extremely fortunate to be working and helping to provide an immediate positive impact for local businesses," says Jason.
Throughout his first seven months on the job, Jason has been busy creating tools to empower restaurants and help them reach independence from the predatory practices of third-party ordering apps.
One week into the quarantine, Jason and his team saw an opportunity to help struggling restaurants trapped by Grubhub and Doordash fees. So, they sprinted to create Foood.com, a directory for customers to order directly from restaurants, helping restaurants save money from third-party ordering commission fees. The restaurant can instead pocket that money during a much needed time.
"I listen and empathize with restaurant owners and employees, then take my observations to make their lives easier," Jason says. "That’s really rewarding for me. I’ve always been drawn to the mission of doing good, and I feel like I’m staying true to that mission everyday."
Currently Jason is the only full-time product designer on the Blueprint team, so he owns all the responsibilities within UX/UI design, and fields any questions about design best practices. He also does some product management to plan for features and QA their current tools.
"It feels like we’re all equals. Everyone listens to each other as an expert in their own respective field. It’s my first time in this kind of structure and I feel an inherent sense of duty to work hard for my team."
Jason and his team are all working remotely due to COVID-19—which although wasn’t planned, has actually fit his post-graduation goals.
"After Designlab, a remote job was high up on my priority list. Spending time with my family is important and I’m able to do that now more than ever," Jason says.
Before everyone was required to be remote, Blueprint’s offices were in Northwestern University’s entrepreneurship accelerator.
"I chose to work with Blueprint because I was familiar with the start-up space and yearned to stay in that innovative environment. For the one month I was on site, it was a blast to meet and be surrounded by like-minded individuals."
Now that Jason has graduated from UX Academy and landed a job that he loves, he has some advice for incoming, current, and graduating UX/UI design bootcamp students:
Your newfound expertise in design could lead you down an infinite number of paths. Every company and organization will benefit from a design thinker. When choosing a place to work, don’t attach yourself to any place, company or product—attach yourself to a mission. For the first time in my career, I feel like where I’m supposed to be. My mission is to help people, and I truly believe I’m doing that right now. If you are true to yourself and your mission, you’ll find your career calling in design.
Jason also recommends meditation as a way to keep your brain operating in a creative and productive way.
"I’m really into meditation. Design requires a lot of brainpower, and I do my best to take care of my mental health by taking time to reflect and show gratitude on a day-to-day basis," Jason says.
"Being able to live in the present and truly be empathetic is extremely important to me in all aspects of life. Many areas of my life improved when I started to meditate and uncloud my thoughts."
Jason’s goal for the rest of 2020 is to keep learning.
"Designlab has been a great platform for me to launch my career and get the fundamentals down. Now, I want to learn more about HCI, visual design, typography and numerous other expertises that fall under design," Jason says.
"Another big goal is to mentor someone. Eventually I would like to work with Designlab and go full-circle, but until then I want to take my design knowledge and help someone starting out so they can reach their goals."
Interested in making a career switch to product design? Check out our UX Academy program.