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How a dancer from Mariupol became a designer at an American company

Nataliia has been practicing modern dance since she was five years old, and at the age of 18, she started working as a choreographer. She is a business manager by education and, for a while owned her own coffee shop. However, her love of logic, her creativity, and the success stories of her friends in IT inspired her to change her profession and try her hand at UI/UX design. Now Nataliia is working in her new profession and mentoring Academy graduates at the same time.

What advice would you give those who want to switch from creative professions to tech?

The biggest surprise was to realize that UX and UI are not about pretty pictures and websites but about an incredibly complex and exciting system and logic. And if this touches someone as much as it did me, you should choose UI/UX design.  

What is essential to do to find a decent job?

In addition to hard skills, you should learn English as much as possible and agree to volunteer projects to gain teamwork experience. And the more, the better!  

Don't give up everything, and don't rush — switch to a new profession gradually if you have the opportunity to work in your previous specialty. After February 24 and moving from Mariupol to Europe, I had no choice — I was looking for a job at a frantic pace.

How did you manage to find a job as a UX designer?

I was actively looking for any projects and vacancies. This lasted 3-4 months until I was lucky enough to meet the American company Concord. They were interested in my CV and my work with such an international institution as UNDP. After four interviews, they invited me into their team. So since July 2022, I have been working as a contractor with an American company as a UX designer, and I feel happy.

Daria Diadenko
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