Youth Design: Helping Students Succeed in the Creative World

Posted by Kate Jurras on Tue, Apr 12, 2011

Guest post by Amy Draybuck and Denise Korn, Youth Design. This post is part of our Digital Works: Careers in Digital Marketing, Technology, and Media Series. This series profiles the skills and experiences that make careers in this industry exciting, and provides advice to job seekers from the area’s foremost employers and experts.

Each summer, Youth Design introduces high school students from less advantaged backgrounds to careers in the design profession by providing high quality, paying internships in Boston area design firms, agencies, and in-house design departments. The mission is to open doors for talented, inner-city students to gain meaningful work experiences, and to provide access to dedicated adult mentors to help the students pursue their interests in a creative field.

youth resized 600Since its pilot in 2003, students like Dimitri Duboisson (left), a 2010 Youth Design alum, have used this program as a platform for success and trajectory into an educational path and career in design. On course to graduate from Media Communications Tech High School, a large Boston Public School in Roxbury, Dimitri attended a Youth Design info session last spring, and a light bulb went off. With big ideas and a little experience in Photoshop and InDesign, this looked like an awesome way for him to explore the creative world. Paired with his mentor Jeremy Zietz (pictured with Dimitri) at Continuum, Dimitri dove right into the program, eager to learn and grow. The pair proved to be a dynamic duo -- as part of the annual Time to Design competition, Dimitri produced a winning design shedding light on the issue of immigration in America. With Jeremy at his side at the Youth Design graduation ceremony, he took home one of the most coveted prizes of the summer -- his design would be featured in a series of the competition's top 3 designs on Karmaloop.com! Check out Dimitri's t-shirt for sale here. Dimitri 's Youth Design experience helped bring him to MassArt, where is currently pursuing a degree in Graphic Design.

YOUTH DESIGN is currently recruiting committed design mentors for this summer to host Boston Public High School students for a seven week immersion in the creative sector. Companies such as Karmaloop, Met Life, Northeastern University, IDEO, TANK, and Continuum rave about their experiences with these students.

If you are excited about providing students an introduction to the design world and a foundation for success in college and beyond, please contact: denise@youthdesign.org. There are many ways to get involved!

Want to learn more? Check out recent coverage on Boldfacers and Karmaloop TV or visit youthdesign.org.