finalists announced

We're pleased to announce four finalists who will participate in the second-annual Student Competition onsite in Boulder:

Kat Davis and Ruby Ku

Austin Center for Design
See the concept video

Tom Haynes and Jane Leibrock

University of Michigan
See the concept video

Martina Pagura

Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design
See the concept video

Izac Ross

Savannah College of Art and Design
See the concept video

See you in Boulder!

student competition overview

The competition brings forward exceptional and engaged undergraduate and graduate students in both critical thinking and hands-on experience over the course of the conference. It's an opportunity to present work in a way that shows, rather than tells, and a unique opportunity for students who may be seeking to connect with new colleagues, potential employers, funders, or new networks.

This year's focus is based on the concept of "Use, not own." Great interactions can connect people to create opportunities for experiences that outweigh the "joy" of ownership. How can we reduce our environmental footprint by sharing products or services? Students selected by the team of mentors have been invited to the conference where they'll compete on the remainder of the competition.

With these goals in mind, students can be certain the competition will be highly competitive, providing a place to consider innovative solutions. One can inform thesis work, engage in critical discussion, or look to it as a platform for exploration. Beyond intangible benefits, the competition will have rewards for the finalists from the competition sponsors.

the conference experience

Students selected by the team of mentors will be invited to the conference where they'll compete on the remainder of the competition. Prior to the competition at the conference, finalists will receive a brief. This brief will further describe the challenge and include details and background research on the target audience. At the conference, students will work up an experience prototype of their ideas. They can choose methods — impromptu workshops, cardboard/paper prototypes, role playing, photographs, sketches, storyboards, and more. Students and mentors will be interviewed and work shown via video during the conference for those not attending.

conference mentors

Liz Danzico, co-chair
Andy Polaine, co-chair
Dave Malouf
Martin Tomitsch
Jeremy Yuille

thanks to our student design competition sponsors

core77 freshbooks media temple nymag rosenfeld media
silverback typekit
Diamond Sponsorship


Gold Sponsorship

Coroflot effective ui adobe

Bronze Sponsorship

Cooper Dell Axure
catalystnyc Sears

Recruiter, Patron, and In-Kind Sponsorship

CPB MK Huge Mad*Pow Industrial Wisdom Autodesk Sapient Nitro Meld SVA Rosenfeld Media JH Phenomblue CX Insights Electronic Ink Apogee HK iQ Content Ltd Balsamiq Konigi IAI UX Show and tell UX Bookclub InfinityPlusOne Webgrrls International Speaker Rate


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