04 October 2022

#ECGrad - Mark 'over the moon' to graduate from College

Twenty-nine-year-old Mark Lauren Hernandez is 'over the moon' to graduate from College after moving from the other side of the world to study in Edinburgh and gain the skills and qualifications needed to pursue an exciting career in the creative sector. 

Mark leaves College with a HND in Visual Communication User Experience Design as well as the Edinburgh College Creative Industries Ambassador Award. We caught up with him to find out more about his College experience: 

How do you feel about Graduating? 

I really feel over the moon that my hard work has paid off but on the other hand it is with sadness to be leaving the College where I have made friends and the lecturers who shaped me to be the designer I am today.

What made you choose Edinburgh College for your studies?

Studying and living in the beautiful city of Edinburgh really appealed to me. I chose to study at Edinburgh College because of its high-quality education and excellent reputation. In just two years, I gained so much confidence and knowledge because of the experiences I had at College.

What were you doing before starting at the college?

Previously, I worked in Kuwait as a Graphic Designer and decided to come to Edinburgh College to study and retrain in User Experience Design so I could elevate my design skills. This would help me in changing my career path and in gaining the knowledge that I need in the UX design industry.

What has been the best thing about studying at Edinburgh College? Any highlights?

Meeting new people and being surrounded by the highly trained lecturers who actively guided me throughout my time at College was the best thing I have ever experienced. Some highlights are winning the YCN (You Can Now) Student Design Awards 2021, being awarded International Student of the Year 2021 and being recognised by the School of Art and Design for a significant achievement in HND Visual Communication User Experience Design during our Graduate Diploma Show. These opened so many doors for me and eventually gave me a foothold in the industry. 

Have you faced any challenges, either before starting or during your studies? How did you overcome them?

The pandemic has been the biggest hurdle when most classes of my first year were delivered online. But it didn’t stop me from learning, so I stayed busy by learning something new and became more social when our class went face-to-face in the remaining year.

If you could give one piece of advice to a student starting at the college now, what would it be?

To any student starting at College now, enjoy your time, have fun and make the most of it. It is vital to stay motivated, inspired and to make yourself a well-rounded person. I am looking forward to seeing you excel in the field you have chosen.

Do you have any messages for the lecturers? 

I would like to thank my lecturers for a fun course that they have made so engaging and for their willingness to share their passion which seems to be a part of what makes them very effective lecturers. I’m glad I took this course with them. Thank you so much!

What are your plans for the future? Are you going on to further study after college or into employment? What is your end goal? 

As I am now working as a UX Designer, I would like to apply everything that I have learned from College and work my way up the career ladder in the creative industry.