California 🇺🇸

Kylie Sagisi

Memorisely UX/UI Student

Sup, gang! I’m Kylie, an aspiring product designer w/ a background in physics and patent law. I'm likely watching Formula 1, going on a walk, or calling my grandma! 🏁🚶‍♀️👵
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Where are you from and/or where are you based as a Memorisely student?

I’m a born and raised Californian from the Central Coast! I went to school in San Diego and have been based in the Bay Area for the last 5 years. I’ve done stints in both the heart of Silicon Valley and San Francisco.

Baker Beach in the Presidio of San Francisco

What inspired you to pursue UX/UI and become a designer?

I’m already a seasoned career changer and this pivot into UX/UI design will be my second professional adventure into the unknown. As a kid, I dreamed of becoming an engineer or researcher because of my love for outer space. So I majored in physics and worked for an astrophysics lab and aerospace start-up throughout college. Despite working on some insane projects, I didn’t experience the passion or happiness I always imagined when I finally “made it”. But I was lucky that my working experience exposed me patent law. When I graduated, I took a chance and started a position as an entry level patent practitioner.

I hustled day in and out to learn the nuances of patent law. In two years, I was promoted and by four years, I was preparing to apply for law school. Despite my success and deep expertise, something felt off. After a lot of introspection, I concluded that I was choosing law school because it was the next logical decision; not because it the right decision for me. Ultimately, I decided that I wanted to step away from patent law entirely.

The decision to leave a career that I was previously invested in has been immensely scary. This job has been the only thing I’ve ever known since graduating and I had zero clue what I wanted to do next. The uncertainty from this dilemma (and other personal things I was struggling with) further fueled the severity of my anxiety and depression. It was then that I started my therapy journey with the support of my family and friends.

I was lucky to access a therapist when I needed it the most. However, there are still so many cultural and physical barriers that prevent people from getting help from a mental health professional. When the pandemic hit, the importance of mental health began gaining the mainstream traction it always deserved. It was finally being recognized as just as important as one’s physical health.

During this time, I became fascinated by health tech companies, like Ginger, BetterHelp, Talkspace, and Lyra Health; not to mention the dozens of start-ups who have emerged since 2020. These companies have built and implemented on-demand therapy platforms for web and mobile apps which have played a critical role in supporting people’s mental health during these unprecedented times. The existing infrastructure for mental health services has been turned upside down, resulting in lower treatment prices to serve a larger population. This shift in healthcare inspired me to pursue UX/UI design. After the Memorisely bootcamp, I aspire to become a product designer that develops and builds digital solutions that propel healthcare innovation and democratize access to care.

If you’re curious to know more details about my journey, click here to read the rest!

Which Bootcamp did you choose to enroll in, and why?

I am enrolled in the UX/UI Design Bootcamp. For the last eight months, I have tried the self teaching method but have lacked the structure, accountability, mentorship, and network to jumpstart my career switch. A few months ago, I randomly came across Zander’s supa fast Figma videos on my Instagram reels. I started following his personal account and from there learned about Memorisely. After waffling back and forth for a couple of months, I finally decided the time is now and signed up!

What will a typical day look like for you as a student?

I’ll be marching through bootcamp while continuing to balance my 9-5 job. So most of my learning and designing will take place in the evenings.

My latest routine starts off each day with a 45 minute morning walk to get the blood flowing and some sunshine. I’m rarely a breakfast person but will religiously brew a single cup of coffee; black if its hot or lightly sweetened with cream if iced. Shout out to my Barratza Encore, IYKYK. I’m grateful to be mostly be working from home, with the exception of a couple days of the week, so I quickly get ready, do my skincare, and hop online.

At 11:00, I take my first dedicated stretching break for my posture and shortly thereafter will eat lunch. I’m basic and am obsessed with making all kinds of salads.

Here’s my take on a steak cobb salad that was straight GAS

If I’m feeling sluggish in the afternoon, I’ll go for a walk while calling my family on the phone to catch up. Then at 15:00, I take my second stretching break and usually wrap up work around 16:00-17:00. This aligns great with the live class sessions I’m enrolled in which will be from 17:00-19:00PST. On non-class days, I plan to still dedicate this time block to my UX/UI studies and will spend the rest of the evening to relax before bed.

What is your current workspace setup?

I’m actually in the process of moving as I write this. So my current workspace setup is non-existent 😅 But regardless of my workspace setup or where I am working, I can guarantee that I will have a million post-it notes scattered around me with random thoughts, grocery lists, and to-do’s.

Learn UX/UI live →

What (digital or physical) product recently blew your socks off?

The AeroPress is a product that I use once a day! This compact gadget is a coffee brewing system that is robust, easy to use, and produces a great cup of coffee. It has even gathered such a ride or die fanbase of coffee professionals and enthusiasts that an entire global coffee-making competition, the World AeroPress Championship, has been dedicated to baristas who believe that their brewing technique and recipe produces the best cup of coffee.

Photo by Sarah Kobos

What I love about it:

  • Easy to use: just add ground beans, hot water, mix, then plunge!
  • Flexible… okay generally brewing coffee allows its drinkers to tailor their cup to personal preferences. But the AeroPress easily accommodates an enthusiast’s tinkering with grind size, beans to water ratio, timing, etc. to find your perfect cup.
  • Easy clean: pop off the filter cap over your compost bin, give a little plunge to pop out the compacted puck of ground coffee, and wash and dry as usual. It’s even dishwasher safe!

What tunes do you listen to while designing?

Finding new music lately has been a drag so I’ve been listening to a lot of greatest hits compilation albums and instrumentals.

  1. How Can You Mend a Broken Heart from The Bee Gees’ self titled documentary
  2. ABBA Gold - bringing back the memories of my riding in my family’s Jeep Grand Cherokee
  3. The Olympians self titled album (everyone’s sleeping on this!)

But here’s my favorite playlist I’ve made this year to date

Share three pieces of advice for fellow and/or future students?

  1. There’s no better time to start than now. For the last year I have been dragging my feet on making this career change. Part of the reason was because I was scared and didn’t even know where to begin. But another reason was because I was always waiting for the “perfect time” to start the transition. I had told myself to practice patience (one of my less fond virtues) and wait until the chaos of work didn’t bleed into my personal time. I thought that once I had a greater bandwidth, I could focus all my energy towards learning UX. However, it’s no surprise that the universe kept finding new obstacles to throw my way. Waiting till things “calmed down” was a lost cause and I just had to take the plunge into the deep end. I couldn’t help but mourn the lost time and wonder where I could have been by now. But in the end, the only thing that matters is that I started!
  2. Write everything down! Future you will thank yourself later. Not only is this a critical skill to practice for UX, it can be a helpful tool to measure your progress both personally and professionally. I first started journaling consistently during my early college years to recount my daily life and memories. Over time, it slowly evolved into a fun and creative hobby, as well as a coping mechanism to deal with my mental and emotional health. Consistently writing down the highs, lows, obstacles, and wins to any journey is clutch when you feel like you feel like you’ve been stuck or aren’t making any progress. You can simply flip back weeks, months, or years to appreciate how much you’ve accomplished to be the person you are today.
  3. Life is like product design… you gotta ITERATE, ITERATE, ITERATE. Another reason why I had put off the UX career change was because I felt like I hadn’t collected enough data to conclusively prove that design would be 100% the perfect fit for me. I had done a short UX research project with a non-profit and even started a personal project to get the feel for a case study. While both of these experiences have been fun, they were not nearly enough information to reassure me that I am making the right decision. Instead of letting that stop me, I am choosing to lean into the nitty gritty mindset of a designer. I am building my future forward by getting curious to the possibilities of UX and trying stuff out. This bootcamp is an opportunity to transform my curiosity and questions into action to discover what is a right fit for me.

Thanks for reading my story!

California 🇺🇸

Kylie Sagisi

Memorisely UX/UI Student

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