Designing a Future Career

Not one, but two programs add to Marcela Corona’s repertoire

Marcela Corona was already leaning toward a design career when she first came to the United States with her partner, a graduate student at UC Berkeley. In her native Mexico, she had been teaching creativity and digital art classes, supplemented with occasional freelance design work. Here in the Bay Area, she heard about UC Berkeley Extension's Art and Design department from friends, took one class and was so intrigued that she registered for the Professional Program in Graphic Design.

But why stop there?

While deep in her graphic design studies, Marcela heard about the Professional Program in User Experience (UX) Design, attended an information session and then proceeded to take the one-day introductory User Experience (UX) Design Fundamentals course. Because she was scheduled to stay in the Bay Area for another year, she decided to complete that program as well.

"I knew that it was going to be a huge commitment and there would be more work to do, but I was up for it," she says confidently as we sit in our S.F. campus. Her self-assurance is well justified: She is the first student to complete the relatively new UX program!


Evolution of a Design
Evolution of a design in Marcela's Branding course

In each course, Marcela was impressed by the curriculum’s real-world applications.

"We got to work with a real client in the Branding course," Marcela relates, "where we prepared our own pitch and presented it. Mine wasn’t chosen, but because of this experience I got to keep working on it and came up with a better project that I’m very proud of."

Marcela still fondly remembers her instructor in that class, Hardy Lahn. "I loved the way he organized the course and how he created a teamwork environment. Even though we were each working on our own version of the branding project, we all got to give feedback and learn from each other."

Looking to emulate Marcela’s dual-program mindset? "I would advise people complete the whole program and even enroll in different electives,” the 2017 graduate emphasizes. “This way, you get to have all the pieces of the puzzle and finally put them together to understand the whole picture."



Marcela Corona

Currently back in Mexico, Marcela is excited about her prospects as she looks for work as a visual designer.

“Having a stronger skill set and good portfolio pieces, I feel more prepared to go out there and look for a job where I could apply everything that I learned so far.”

View more of Marcela's work here.

Challenge yourself to turn your talents into a rewarding career with either the Professional Program in Graphic Design or in User Experience (UX) Design—or both!