College graduation is both an exciting and nerve-wracking time because you may feel full of uncertainty about your future career.
Enter the internship opportunity: a quick dip to test the waters and build some experience before you take the big plunge. The ability to experience what it’s like to work at a marketing and communications agency, along with putting a few project notches on your belt, can get you ready to dive right in.
As idfive’s latest former UX intern (and new Assistant Creative Strategist), I have found that working at this creative agency is fast-paced, focused, incredibly rewarding, and, above all, an amazing learning experience.
What was it about idfive internships that drew me in?
I’ve wanted to be a UX designer for the last two years. Once I graduated from my undergrad in advertising and public relations, I felt kind of directionless, but then I learned about HCI (Human Computer Interaction) and IDIA (Interaction Design and Information Architecture), which inspired me to pursue a master’s in Interaction Design and Information Architecture at the University of Baltimore. There, I met my thesis advisor, Dr. Deborah Kohl, who also happens to be the thesis advisor for one of idfive’s founders and current EVP of Strategy, Andrés Zapata. She connected us, which helped make my internship happen!
Why did I choose UX design?
After hearing about UX in a graphic design class I took my final semester, I couldn’t get it out of my head. I actually thought about staying longer as an undergrad to tailor my degree more toward UX, but I definitely needed to graduate. As a digital native, I’ve always been fascinated with how web pages are set up and how people think and UX design is precisely that—how people think and behave, how they learn, and how they feel empathy.
Did I have any preconceived ideas about agency life coming into this internship?
No, I haven’t had too many job experiences after my undergrad graduation, but I did work two brief desk jobs. One of them was for my school’s marketing department, where I worked on social media copy and taking pictures, which lasted about six months or so. My other job lasted about a year, primarily doing clerical work. That said, the one-on-one work, getting tasks, and the other aspects of working a desk job helped in some ways. Overall, I was very much a blank slate and ready to learn.
What projects have been my favorites so far?
I’ve done some really amazing things, so narrowing them down is challenging! One of the first things that I did was a website usability survey analysis, reviewing all the respondents’ comments to find commonalities. Being able to take what they teach you in IDIA—especially as it pertains to design thinking—and apply them to this task was a great learning opportunity. We often focus on hard skills in my grad program, so I learned a lot from that project, especially with the back-and-forths I had with Andrés.
I also worked on a similar project with Lead Strategist Peter Toran. Unlike the first survey analysis, these survey results focused on emotions—ranging from positive, neutral, or negative. It was a lot of fun because you begin to see patterns emerge, which then informs your design decisions down the line.
Currently, I’m working on a wireframe for a client, starting with a content inventory, which is exactly what it sounds like—taking a website and indexing all the different content that lives on it. This includes pages, images, videos, and everything in between. I had only done one other content inventory before, so I felt equally excited and nervous to start. Because of their size, they can be dense and difficult to wrap your head around entirely, even for someone who does this on the regular! Doing it was great practice because I found that the detail I included was pretty high-level—super rewarding for my second content inventory.
All in all, I feel like I’ve learned a lot throughout my time at idfive from everyone.
What’s one thing that surprised me?
While idfive has a casual and laid-back environment, it’s a work-hard, play-hard type of place. People here really get their work done in an efficient manner, but it’s not in a way where they are suffering or torturing themselves at the expense of it—fivers know how to handle themselves in terms of their workload. Seeing a group of dedicated and talented professionals weave their magic so humbly and dexterously is impressive and inspiring.
Final thoughts: What’s my piece of advice for anyone considering an internship at idfive?
First of all, I would want them to know that interns will need to work hard and bring their A-game—as well as being able and willing to listen. Don’t take any feedback or criticism too personally, be thirsty for knowledge and learn from it! Seriously, jump into the deep end and be a sponge—the insights you’ll gain are a valuable treasure you’ll take with you wherever you go!
Reach out to idfive to learn more about our current internship opportunities.
Wyatt is a passionate learner who likes to understand concepts and ideas from the inside out. His approach to strategy can be summed up as him analyzing, decoding, and applying what he has learned in real-world and abstract environments, allowing him to create and interact with his work and teammates in a meaningful way.