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Welcome, i’m Rae,

senior at Carnegie Mellon, School of Design,
big sister,
enthusiastic host and cook
with a
discerning perspective,
straight-forward  way of communicating 
who grew up in
Tianjin, China
who thinks
coffee is to be enjoyed not exploited for caffeine,
every unfamiliar place can become a home
who loves
the color red,
growth (plants and personal)

Thoughts on Design

My interest and pursuit of design is based on the extent by which design changes individuals, communities, and practices. Throughout my experience at Carnegie Mellon School of Design I’ve invested time working closely with professors who are passionate about social innovation. These projects have greatly impacted my thinking about people, and my understanding of everyday work and life. As part of a design team under Kristin Hughes (summer of 2015), our goal was to connect two neighborhoods in PGH by developing plans for an Urban Commons. The methods of research appropriate to engage this community lead me to deeper insights of human expectations and practices. Consequently, now with any project I work on, first investigating the humans, behaviors, and practices surrounding the defined problem is my main objective.

Responding to life needs through human-centered design cannot be limited to an individual or even a community in itself. I’ve learned that there is significance to the place where community needs are being realized. Influenced by a class last semester called Sensing Environments, I am now realizing that my process must account for the environments surrounding design challenges. That class taught me to map societal trends through location-based indicators, data, and information. The Facebook Campus Wall concept was built from this kind of thinking.