Redefining Traditional Career Pathways
Students of Xi: Meet Albert
Like many students who finish university, Albert Brunda wasn’t sure if he wanted to pursue a career in his field of study. Having completed a double degree in Digital Media and Marketing, Albert experienced a strange state of limbo. Like many students, he graduated without knowing what to do next.
In what seemed like a marvellous coincidence or a case of serendipity, Albert got in touch with a friend who was studying User Experience Design (UX) at Academy Xi. Albert became involved with the UX project his friend was working on.
“I ended up really enjoying the UX project”, says Albert.“I knew I wanted to pursue something in design, but I knew it wasn’t graphic design.”
Albert has always had a passion to work in a career with the sole focus of driving positive impact. On learning more about UX Design at Academy Xi, he became inspired to pursue a non-traditional career path.
“At its core, UX is almost like a social impact discipline. You’re effectively designing to increase someone’s satisfaction or you’re designing for social good.”
With a newly ignited spark for UX, Albert decided to work whilst taking up the UX course part-time. “I thought UX was literally just Interface Design (UI), but that misconception was shattered once I started the course,” Albert notes. “Effectively UX is an end-to-end process. I think most people, like me, don’t realise they’re doing UX. In uni, I had completed plenty of research for projects and generated things like personas. All of these things are part of the UX process, but I had no idea I was doing it.”
Taking his freshly found knowledge of UX, Albert tapped into his networks on LinkedIn, and caught the attention of a Product Manager at childcare startup, Xplor.
“I received a message from Xplor to meet the Founder and Product Manager. After meeting them, they reviewed my portfolio and decided give me the position.”
Working for a startup gave Albert the freedom and flexibility to creatively pursue his interest for UX in a meaningful way. On the benefits of working for a startup he noted, “The open plan of the office is great and I definitely feel more supported. On my first day my manager asked me what resources I needed to deliver, and it all happened very quickly. Plus, I don’t have to iron any more shirts!” adds Albert humorously.
Hoping to encourage others who want to challenge the status quo of the traditional career path, Albert’s advice is simple: “The community and the power of networks are really important. At first, it felt awkward, but going to a UX meetup really helped me to understand what UX was. You definitely have to embed yourself in the community that you want to get involved in.”
Besides the power of people, Albert believes ensuring the stability of your financial situation takes a lot of pressure off pursuing a meaningful career.
“Your immediate financial needs are to be considered when making the leap. I thought it was a good middle ground to work and take the UX course part-time on the weekend because you’re able to support yourself financially, but still head in the direction you want to go.”
Ready to challenge yourself with a meaningful and exciting career? See where UX Design might lead you with our UX Design career guide.