10 Questions for our alumni
Kuu Hubbard, BFA, Graphic Design, 2013
1. Why did you choose to attend Grand Valley?
I looked at a few schools on the west side of the state but ultimately fell in love with Grand Valley’s campus and the focus on liberal arts. Calder was impressive but I also appreciated the opportunity to supplement my art classes with other classes just in case I wanted to change my major sometime down the line.
2. How or why did you choose your major or main emphasis area?
I had always been interested in art but I ended up choosing graphic design because of the scalable job opportunities. At the time I had the vision of becoming a freelance designer that would be able to travel anywhere while still being able to work as long as there was a healthy WiFi connection.
3. What advice do you have for future students thinking about colleges?
Don’t just think about classes that seem immediately relevant to your
major but look for opportunities and classes that will supplement you
in some way. This might be by way of classes related to marketing
yourself or improving public speaking skills.
Once you get to school it’s so beneficial to have a great circle of friends that get you out of the classroom. It’s healthy to get out there and explore outside of school! We were so lucky to be close to Grand Haven for a little nature and Grand Rapids for a dash of a city.
4. What advice do you have for current students thinking about careers?
Always be planning and thinking 2 steps ahead. That’s obviously much easier said than done but it’s very competitive out there.
5. What did you do after graduating?
When I graduated I had an opportunity to move to Chicago to be a junior designer at a small digital agency. I worked with the lead designer on websites for small companies.
6. What are you doing now?
I’m a Product Designer at a marketing automation company called
ActiveCampaign. At ActiveCampaign our designers are embedded into
different agile product teams so that we can focus on one part of the
platform - in my case I’m on the mobile team working on both iOS and
Android apps. While we’re on these separate teams, the designers still
work together to build out our design system and implement patterns
throughout our apps.
Product design is a great way to work with other designers and engineers.
7. How have you used the skills you developed in your field of study in your life and/or career after GVSU?
Absolutely, 100%! We may not have had a ton of classes with digital
projects at the time, but the core design principles directly apply.
Things like white space, typography, gestalt - it’s all there and it
Believe it or not, critique is probably one of the biggest skills that I’ve used that I didn’t think much of at the time but you always need to be reviving and providing feedback both on your work, the work of others and performance.
8. What is the best advice you got from an instructor at Grand Valley?
I’m not sure of it was advice really but multiple profs seemed to always remind me that it’s very competitive to be in art and design. I think this reminder was always a natural motivator for me.
9. What is your favorite memory of being a student at Grand Valley?
I made a great group of friends at GV! We did a lot of fun stuff but one of my favorite things was Calder Thanksgiving every year.
10. Anything else you would like to share with our Visual and Media Arts Community?
If you’re ever in Chicago or trying to move to Chicago I’m happy to grab coffee and chat!
Image credit by Kuu Hubbard. You can see more of Kuu's work online at https://dribbble.com/hikuu.