At six months old, Andrew Hwang and his family left South Korea and moved to the Bay Area to embark on a new life in the United States. He was raised in San Ramon, California where he grew up surrounded by friends and family. As a high school senior, he applied to the University of California San Diego to embark on his college education. Post-graduation, Andrew started his Time for Experience “TFE” Internship with MK Decision, later growing into the User Experience Designer he had dreamt of becoming. In this month’s People Spotlight, we take a deeper look at Andrew, his role, and how he found his “why” within MK.
Growing up, who had the most influence on you?
My parents, once I went to college, I began to appreciate all the effort they put into raising me. They have an incredible work ethic and went above and beyond to provide a good life for me.
What did you study in college?
I attended the University of California San Diego, where I studied Cognitive Science in Computer Interaction. It was the first time I had been away from home and was able to grow a lot as a person.
When did you realize this was what you wanted to do?
In my last year of college, I took an upper-division course that introduced me to user experience and I became very interested. With UX Design, I am able to connect my hobbies of drawing and building with my career aspirations of working in technology.
Why do you want to work with technology?
I want to positively influence others and help the world through technology. Technology has the power to radically change peoples’ lives with how quickly information transfers to save lives and educate people, which led me to MK!
What do you like to do in your free time?
I enjoy hanging out with friends, watching the sunset at the beach, swimming in the ocean, going out to eat, exploring San Diego, and playing video games.
What is your current role at MK Decision?
I am a User Experience (UX) Designer. Basically, I take requirements from product managers and clients to design features as a part of MK’s platform. My responsibilities range from designing features for the entire system to small, individual systems.
How has your role transitioned during your time at MK?
I started as a TFE where I met with the Marketing department to help with customer onboarding on the website. Once I was hired, I transitioned into working with the Product team. Currently, I add layers to our existing system, but previously I was able to lay the foundation of our design, which was awesome. My job is unpredictable, and I have been able to contribute to many different projects from Dashboard and Customer Portal to AppFlow.
Why do you like working at MK Decision?
I feel confident in MK’s design and development. During my TFE program, I felt like I was competing against myself to get hired and bet on my abilities. Once hired, MK gave me many new opportunities. In February, MK sent me to a conference in Memphis at the Barret School of Banking where I learned about commercial lending. I went solo and was able to meet some interesting people. We have stayed in touch on social media following the conference.
What are some challenges you face in your current position and how do you overcome them?
I do not have any challenges, sometimes the workload is heavy but I manage by prioritizing. By implementing Design Quality Assurance, we have been able to ensure a better design process throughout the engineer’s coding, leading to overall better work.
What is your proudest moment at MK Decision?
I had created the design for the Fair Lending Report, and the Product Managers showed my design to the client and the client loved it!
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned here at MK?
At MK, I have learned to effectively communicate with my team and collaborate to solve problems. Everyone has a willingness to help, and I appreciate that support.