Politics and UX: Lessons Learned Working in Higher Ed (panel)

  • 12 Oct 2017
  • 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
  • Bad Weather Brewery, 414 7th St W, St Paul, MN 55102
  • 15


Registration is closed

We have all felt the politics of working in UX whether we work for a large corporation, a small business, or a non-profit organization. What tactics can we as a UX professional use to navigate the politics of organizations and decisions?

In this months meeting, our panel of speakers will discuss dealing with politics and higher education that applies to all areas of business.  They will share their challenges and lessons they learned  working in higher education and how it applies to your company or organization. 

Take-aways include:

  • Shared governance
  • Leveraging committees
  • Navigating large political structures
  • Finding advocates, securing stakeholders
  • Building credibility  


Amanda Costello  is the lead content strategist in the University of Minnesota's College of Education and Human Development (CEHD). Amanda is an award-winning speaker on working with content specialists and the web, building web teams, and sharing ideas to do good work. She enjoys filling out forms because it feels like taking a test where she knows all the answers.

Amanda's lessons from higher ed include: 
  • Working with stakeholders, specifically subject matter experts
  • How to explain what you do to your boss, grandboss, or... anyone, really!
  • Organizational silos: the bad, the good, and the opportunities hidden inside their candy shells. 

Richard Harrison recently joined the newly-formed design team at Minnesota IT Services where he is leading the charge to improve the user experience for enterprise applications that support Minnesota. For ten years, Rich worked as a senior interactive designer for Metropolitan State University. Practice areas include business discovery, user research, and interaction design.

Rich's lessons from higher ed include:

  • Understanding how shared governance impacts projects
  • Leveraging committees to build relationships and get work done
  • Learning how to navigate large, political structures
  • Guerrilla usability testing with students

Claire Rasmussen is a Senior Content Strategist at The Nerdery, formerly a content strategist for the University of Minnesota, after serving 5 years as an academic librarian in St. Paul, MN and Madison, WI.

Claire's lessons from higher ed include:

  • Finding faculty advocates (co-conspirators)
  • Working with subject matter experts who over-estimate their marketing abilities
  • Acting like a consultant, not a member of administrative staff, to build credibility and get work done

Meghan Hatalla has worked in higher education for nearly six years in roles integrating web strategy, communication and interactive project management. Her lessons from higher ed include: 

  • Finding opportunities to work outside of your PD to grow.
  • Despite our growing reliance on technology tools for communication and *increasing efficiency,* many situations can be better resolved in face to face meetings or more analog-oriented skills.
  • It doesn't make sense to jump on every technology fad that emerges.

Outside of wrangling faculty, employees and students, Meghan is a former UXPA-MN board member and is active in the UX community. She holds a Masters degree in Technical Communication.


Bad Weather Brewery

414 7th St W, St Paul, MN 55102



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