Workday and SFSU Return for Spring Semester DxD Intensives

March 30, 2023

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Workday joins forces with San Francisco State University (SFSU) once again to bring DxD Intensives to SFSU design students. 

Partnering industry with Minority Serving Institutions of higher learning, the coalition's Intensives program was developed to bridge the experience gap that historically excluded students routinely face in design. Through a “real-world” design challenge, student teams, under the guidance of industry mentors, gain invaluable corporate experience and a state-of-the-art project for their portfolios while expanding their professional network

Mentors, in turn, will have the opportunity to learn from the diverse lived experiences that the students bring to the table – a true collaboration. Anna Atiagina, a Senior UX Designer at Workday, is a first-time mentor in the Intensives program with a compelling reason to participate:

“Being an immigrant, starting over my career in a new country with English as a second language, I didn’t have a very clear path towards being a UX designer and no connections in the industry. A small talk at a professional meetup was dreadful to me! My mentors helped me immensely from encouraging me to apply for a college design degree, to my first days in the real work environment (that was a big adjustment too!). I wouldn’t have gotten  anywhere without their help, and I want to give back now that I have more to share.”

For the next eight weeks, Anna, along with eight other Workday mentors and special guest speakers will be guiding, coaching, and supporting student teams as they tackle a timely and relevant design challenge that Workday and many employers are facing: how to support the future of work.

Specifically, SFSU students will be taking on the nature of hybrid work; reimagining work models and designing ways to advance toward a more diverse, inclusive and connected workforce.

Hybrid work models have their inherent opportunities and challenges. High on the list is cultivating and nurturing a collective culture that is accessible, inclusive and equitable — which is imperative, particularly with so many employees operating in different locations, let alone facilitating a sense of connection and belonging. 

Students will be tasked to design an app or website that addresses the issues associated with hybrid work. Under the guidance of their Workday mentors, teams will validate their work with users from Workday and create an end-to-end experience map. The final result will be a robust prototype addressing each stress point identified in their concept. 

At the end of the cohort, student teams will present their designs for their Instructor’s and Workday mentor’s feedback. As an added bonus, Workday has optioned to potentially purchase student’s idea(s), similar to its other acquisitions.

DxD can’t wait to see what innovations will emerge from the diverse perspectives and lived experiences of the SFSU students. We’ll be following their progress and growth over the course of the program, so stay tuned for the next installment of Workday’s Spring Intensive cohort 2023!

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