Shumka Centre / Design for Startups | Spring 2018

Design for Startups is a unique program in which student designers join early-stage company teams to work on a specific design problem.

Through this initiative, we have developed and tested a new model for connecting the art and design university with early-stage companies through accelerators and VC-backed portfolios.


Spring 2018
Over the course of 12 weeks, ten student designers will work directly with the technical and business leads of ten local companies to explore and develop a new methodology for connecting design to Internet startups. Student designers will cosider existing design gaps, perform user interface/usability studies, and develop design strategies for the companies in residence.  This project is generously supported by innovate BC.

Spring 2018 company-student partnerships:



Arbox is a clean-tech software startup that offers an asset management platform in the Renewable Energy industry.

Stephanie Yen is currently in her final year majoring in Communication Design with a background in print, branding and designing for the digital realm. If she didn’t have to sleep or eat, she’d be designing 24/6. (A day off to take her dog to the mountains and maybe to bake banana bread.)





Dayboard is an early-stage SaaS product that helps you work with less distractions. Our core product is a web app and Chrome extension that serves over 20,000 users worldwide. We also have a team version that helps managers stay on top of their team’s priorities.

Katrina Goodchild is a third year student of Industrial Design at Emily Carr University with a background in Visual arts, and a passion for human-centered experience and design. Throughout her practice, Katrina has developed a keen interest in the field of medical design, and wishes to pursue an empathetic, human-centered approach as a means to affect behavioral and operational change in the medical realm. She regards design as the juncture of critical and creative thought-where: research, ideation and interaction combine to develop innovative solutions in response to emerging social and technological needs.


DomoMi connects the feeling of home with software & hardware.

Susan Sun is a 3rd year Interaction Design student at Emily Carr University of Art and Design. Outside of school, she is also a photographer specialized in wedding and fashion.


Dr. Bill is a medical billing service used and beloved by over a thousand physicians in BC (and soon Canada). It makes it really easy for doctors to capture information of patients they’ve seen and log claims that will then be paid by MSP.

Kelin Kaardal is a 4th-year interaction design student at ECU. I have consistently worked in the industry throughout my degree program, at Telus Digital, Briteweb and as an RA for the Health Design Lab. As my practice has developed, I have become increasingly interested in how design research strategies can be employed to develop and support user-centred service models within health design.




is an experiential recruiting platform that connects the market’s most qualified technical talents with top employers through stimulating hackathon events.

Amy Zhou is currently an Interaction Design Student at Emily Carr University. Her interest in design lies in UX/UI, problem solving, creative direction, branding and brainstorming new ideas. She want to have a better understanding of human empathy and emotions. Also she loves to illustrate, participating in hackathons and game jams!






Hitblocks is a crowdsourcing control center helping data scientists and AI organizations acquire high quality data through crowdsourcing suppliers like Amazon Mechanical Turk for large volume image segmentation projects.

Sandra Han is currently studying Interaction Design at Emily Carr University of Art & Design. She is a multidisciplinary designer from Canada. Her interests and passions lie within emotional design, UX/UI design, and graphic design. She finds delight in researching and learning more about emotional qualities of the mind, and how we can implement emotions into design solutions and user experiences.





Keela Simple tools that power your nonprofit. Keela’s comprehensive platform provides nonprofits with the ability to manage projects, contacts, email marketing, and donations. Keela is quick to learn, easy to use and offers an end-to-end solution to all of your nonprofit’s management needs.

Jaehee Lee is a UX/UI designer currently studying interaction design at Emily Carr University. With a background in commerce and an interest for human sensibility ergonomics, she is passionate about creating meaningful projects with the right balance between business goals and user goals.





Responsive is an enterprise SaaS platform that helps private wealth managers better serve clients through UX and AI.

Sheleen King is studying Interaction Design in ECUAD. She believes analyzing what the user needs and creating a meaningful solution is the pinnacle to a successful designer. Her passions lay within drawing connections between technology and daily life by incorporating user-friendly methods. Through her major, she has developed an interest in UI/UX design and subsequently has been able to hone her skills in wire-framing, prototyping, and user-testing.






Two Wheel Gear is a lifestyle brand for business professionals that bike to work. We specialize in designing and manufacturing specialty bike bags to remove the barriers of biking to work.

Alejendro Alarcon is an industrial and graphic designer, currently enrolled in the MDes program at Emily Carr. His research is fueled by his passion for bicycles and exercise; he is inspired by nature and intrigued by minimalism. He loves a challenge and finding ways to be a better designer.





 is a SaaS company providing online scheduling software with additional features like POS, marketing and reporting capabilities.

Sahil Mroke is a third year Communication Design student with a passion for design and photography. A large aspect of Sahil’s creativity stems from music and blending various forms of design. His interests have developed to creating collaborative working environments with other designers and artists. Sahil has spent some time working with small businesses doing freelance design work, creating brand identities, business cards, and designing websites. He is passionate about supporting these local companies, as he has played a part in building his family’s own small business.



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