Opinion: Professionals at the Student Conference?

The student conference is an excellent opportunity to hear some pretty good speakers. I’m talking to the professionals, but it’s also an excellent time to connect with some awesome people. Professionals have the opportunity to sit around and get to know our speakers. This conference is for students, and they are on a schedule between lunch and portfolio reviews. So you can comfortably meet our speaks and develop a great creative relationship. I’m super excited to hear Dawn this year.


Back story. Last year, I had the opportunity to travel to Chicago for the Pop-Up Innovate Mash-Up Program put on by AIGA Minnesota. While I was there, I met Dawn owner of Firebelly Design. Now, I love Dawn and her wife. The hospitality was unbelievable, and the food slayed all day. But before meeting her, I was into AIGA Chicago Design camp and the year I wanted to go Firebelly hosted the event. So, it’s safe to say that Dawn and I have history in a good way.

What’s cool is the work Firebelly does. From the design of Chicago’s Bikeshare Divvy to FLOR Rebranding I must say they are very talented. Their employees are friendly, and I’m sure you will love Dawn.


From what I remember Dawn is an old school AIGA member, and she spoke everywhere from TEDx, Design Week Chicago, and the Pratt Institute. Her writing appeared in Computer Art Magazine, and she’s an Advisory board member of AIGA Chicago.

I will never forget Dawn and Firebelly’s facilitation workshop. I’m a big advocate, and I didn’t even know she was coming until I saw the email for the student conference. I guess what I’m trying to tell you is the student conference is a valuable experience for both students and professional. It would be great to see you out there this year.

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By Timothy Hykes
Published February 3, 2017
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