My childhood is full of foggy memories and stories told by others that usually make me smile. At 8, I was moved across the country to Colorado, where I discovered my creativity, played sports and made lasting friends.

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Colorado

In college, I followed a love for people and the ocean. In that ambiguous time after college, I lost myself in years of draining jobs and broken relationships, I decided creativity was where I would find myself again. Creativity led to technology, and then led to my love for people, and in the combination of them all is where I am today.

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More about Me & the BDW program


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In my personal journey to happiness in not only my career, but also my life, I sought out a program that could fulfill my curiosity and passion for creation, technology and helping people and this planet. This led me to BDW.

BDW is a year long, accelerated graduate program dedicated to redesigning learning for the realities of the 21st-centery global economy. Here we’re developed into marketable talent that possess a unique and relevant combination of user experience design, product development, visual design, research and entrepreneurship.

Needless to say, this program will kick your ass, in the best possible way! Having…


At BDW, where I am currently in their 50-week designer founder accelerator, we get the distinct opportunity to visit and engage with Denver/Boulder creative companies, as they are potential places of employment after our 50-weeks in the program. Last week, we were headed to EffectiveUI. We’d learned they had a 5-hour time slot planned for us and we had no idea what to expect.

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The day arrived. I equipped myself with fancy attire, a computer, pen, paper and printed resumes. I was ready for anything. The building is in a great part of Denver, it’s old, industrial, exposed brink &…


The Superhero Pose

After a tiring, but fun day I found myself lounging on my couch indulging in the latest episode of Grey’s Anatomy attempting to turn off my brain for a while. If you aren’t familiar, this show is about goings-on at a hospital and in this particular episode a doctor was preparing to do a very intense surgery. She was standing in an “odd” position and a fellow doctor asked her “What are you doing?”, she simply replied,

“I am being a superhero”.

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Photo from ABC TV Show Grey’s Anatomy

She briefly explained that its been proven that if people simply stand in a superhero position for 2…


It was Tuesday morning, I had a long day of classes ahead, and I was getting ready in my mirror when I suddenly got a pit in my stomach.

Panic.

Startup semester is happening soon and I don’t have a single idea, will one ever come to me? Who will be in my group? What will we be working on for the next 5 months?

A big reason I came to BDW was to get the chance to work on a startup idea. I had gotten a taste of the startup world and the excitement it could bring and I…


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Ideas come from thoughts. Weaving thoughts, like a stream, trying this way, that way, maybe this way again but… different.

Synonyms, antonyms, verb, noun. Just google it.

Typing the words, clickity clack. But a pen may mean more this time.

Write it out. Write words, phrases, fragments until something makes sense. But does it make sense? Ask others, read aloud, emphasize, re-word.

Read again.

Are they too close to the words? I ask others again.

Sure yeah, I feel it. It sounds right, nod yeah… yes… hell yes!

Prepare it. Summarize it. Share it to the world.

Maybe its not right… but it’s closer. …


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5 months ago I sat in a room of strangers, arms crossed, stomach crippled with anxiety, and my thoughts full of question…

“…am I going to fit in?”

“…am I talented enough to be here?”

“…what’s next?”

As class began, the anxiety only got worse, I have to talk about myself!?

Speaking in front of crowds, whether just a few people or a room full, has always been something I’ve tried desperately to avoid. I even went as far as waiting until my very last semester of college to complete the basic course of Public Speaking. …


Having an open mind means being willing to consider or receive different ways of thinking. It means being flexible and adaptive to new experiences or ideas. Developing an open mind happens through critical thinking, reasoning and embracing your unknown.

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So, you want to be an experience designer? You MUST have an open mind. You need to be able to “become” another person, and not just another person, a set of people and, sometimes, multiple sets of people. And those people change depending on the product you’re designing for. …


During last semester, a BDW grad advised us on ways to maximize our year in the program. Although he had much to say, one thing resonated with me… he called us Risk Takers.

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Never, in my close to 30 years of life, have I ever thought of myself as a risk taker. I often spend a lot of time focusing on my anxieties and how they hold me back or try to determine what is the most responsible or safe decision to make. …

Ashlee Perry

Product Designer at Opendoor, previously at Uber. Urban living. World loving. Aspiring adventurer. Creator of things.

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