10 Questions for Huijia, Aalto Startup Center’s New Design Trainee

Huijia Zhuang is a new design trainee at Aalto Startup Center who started work January 2022. She is working in communication and marketing, and providing design support for startups.

To help our startups learn a bit more about Huijia, we held a brief interview with her.

Q1: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? 👋

Huijia: Hi, my name is Huijia. I am currently a second-year master student at Aalto University. Last week I started my design trainee journey at Aalto Startup Center and I am looking forward to meeting you. My story with Finland can be dated back to four years ago, when I was exchanging in Joensuu. I enjoyed my stay there and decided to come back for my master studies.

Q2: What is your master’s studies about? 

Huijia: I study urban studies and planning in landscape architecture, in a joint program with University of Helsinki. It is a multidisciplinary program and covers many urban issues. This semester, I plan to take participatory planning and landscape ecology course.

Q3: What’s your professional background?

Huijia: My bachelor background is landscape architecture, so I have design-related knowledge and used to present my ideas through illustrations, models and renderings. I am familiar with Adobe Creative Suite, SketchUp, AutoCAD and Microsoft Office software. When doing designs, sustainability and climate change are the two topics I always keep in mind. My study in master equipped me with more skills, such as using Qgis, designing logos and getting to know more about service design.

Q4: Why did you want to work at Aalto Startup Centre?

Huijia: I am curious about how startups operate and how they grow to success step by step. So this is a nice opportunity! It not only lets me apply what I am capable of, but also is a chance allowing me to work with the startups closely and get to know more about them.

Q5: What’s your role in Aalto Startup Center?

Huijia: I will be working closely with the CoCo (communications and community) team to facilitate marketing and communication, including designing event posters and banners. Together with another design trainee Jingting, I will provide design support for startups. Besides, I will work with different projects and listen to their design needs. I will also explore more possibilities and adjust my role according to the needs and my interests.

Q6: What is your impression of Aalto Startup Center

Huijia: I think Aalto Startup center is dynamic and inclusive. It gives me a positive and welcoming atmosphere. My colleagues are very friendly and supportive. They are always willingly to help me and encourage me. In terms of working, I am encouraged to find my own role in the team and focus on what I am interested in. As a result, there are lots of flexibility and potentials.

Q7: What do you like about being a designer?

Huijia: I like the fact that design can be used in every field and on various purposes. It aids to save users’ time, improve the quality of life and shape our planet in a better way. And being a designer means I have a chance to participate in these processes and witness the changes.

Q8: What’s your work style?

Huijia: I like to respond in time and brainstorm with my teammates. And I am willing to learn from others and grow with the team. I reckon communication of great importance in teamwork since it will save troubles from misunderstanding. I also prefer to be organized and efficient in order to keep work and life balanced.

Q9: How will you spend 2022

Huijia: I will enjoy working in Aalto Startup Center and later start to write my thesis. After graduation, I will keep seeking opportunists to improve my design skills and deepen my knowledge in urban planning.

Q10: What would you like to say to our startups?

Huijia: From my point of view, the process of turning ideas into startups companies might be very tough. Hence, I admire your courage and creativity. I hope to help you in design field and I am sure that I will learn a lot from you. Let’s get in touch!