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NewsFeb 21, 2024

Introducing the RGD Project-Based Mentorship Program

Written by Rupsha Mutsuddi Provisional RGD, Rupsha Mutsuddi
The Header shows a grid of images done by previous RGD Mentorship Program Participants. From top left to bottom right Cetl app design by Jasmine Bashai, Kaieki Stationery and Brand Design by Kelly Wong SWIFT Brand by Angelica Li After Dark by Kristina Campeau SWIFT Packaging by Angelica Li Roots & Ray Branding by Nikki Cohen Projects by past RGD mentorship program participants. Image compiled by Roxanne Hammond Provisional RGD

The RGD's Project-Based Mentorship Program: combining the team-based approach of the Designathon with the project-focused nature of the previous Internship Mentorship Program.

Teamwork, mentorship and experiential learning are key components of success within the design industry. In the past, the RGD's Designathon program provided opportunities for students to collaborate with industry professionals in short time frames to create small-scale projects for non-profit organizations. The RGD's Internship Mentorship Program which ran during the COVID-19 pandemic gave Student RGDs looking for internships the opportunity to collaborate with a Certified RGD mentor on a project.

Inspired by these programs, this eight-week program aims to assist emerging designers in filling gaps in their portfolios with projects they haven’t had the opportunity to do in their school curriculum or professional workplaces. Emerging designers will develop skills such as art directing, giving and receiving feedback and rationale writing.

A Certified RGD will act as creative director, a Provisional RGD/Jr. Affiliate Member will act as an art director and 1-2 Student RGDs will act as junior/production designers. Each team will work on a mock project (proposed by the Certified RGD or the RGD). 

If you’re a Student RGDProvisional RGD or a Jr. Affiliate Member interested in participating, please fill out this form by March 7. 

The teams will be finalized by mid-March and the program will run from mid-March until mid-May.

We have several different mock projects for applicants to choose from; everything from branding for in-person events to creating apps or websites for healthcare and not-for-profit organizations.


Darrell Corriveau RGD

Darrell focuses on brand and user/customer experience design to help facilitate and support the success of businesses and organizations. Darrell leads and works collaboratively with both internal and client-side teams to design and develop solutions that work and that people love. He has partnered with a diverse group of clients in the government, healthcare and financial services sectors such as the IESO, TD Bank Group, Ontario Hospital Association (OHA), Ontario Science Centre, Supply Ontario and FSRA. He also teaches Interaction Design at George Brown College

Proposed Project: Darrell will help guide the team to develop an e-commerce platform for a current local business that doesn't have one.

Iffat Jokhio RGD

Having spent most of my design career (14 years!) at Pivot, a UX design studio in Toronto, Iffat had the opportunity to wear many hats on the design team and to grow into a leadership role. Working with Canadian clients from the healthcare, financial, non-profits, education and government sectors have afforded her the chance to really put a research-driven process to the test to help her clients learn about and provide better solutions for their users. 

Proposed Project: Iffat will be leading the team in UX Research and Design project that will improve healthcare experiences for patients, caregivers and healthcare providers.

Jennifer Eustace RGD

Jennifer (@electrikmode) is a senior designer specializing in strategic branding and UX Design. She is a graduate of OCAD University's Bachelor of Design program (Graphic Design) and is Nielsen Norman Group Certified (UXC) with a specialty in interaction design. Jennifer has worked with clients in both the public and private sector, across different industries. She believes that good design is timeless, with the power to effectively communicate ideas and create memorable experiences across any medium. 

Proposed Project: Jennifer will guide students in a project that aims to Redesign IKEA Canada's home page, at least one product series page and at least one product page, in line with UX best practices, information architecture principles, accessibility standards and IKEA's brand standards.

Josh Skinner RGD

Josh is a product designer with over 12 years of experience in the design industry. Having worked in a variety of sectors, from creative agencies to major financial institutions like the Bank of Montreal and organizations in the tech sector such as Lever and Loop, Josh has expertise in creating effective design solutions for complex problems. Josh is passionate about equity and accessibility and advocating for inclusive design. Josh is also an educator and has taught graphic design principles and digital imaging at the post-secondary level for over 7 years. 

Proposed Project: Josh will lead a project that focuses on building a transit app for a city.

Magued Hanna RGD

Magued is a distinguished UX/Product Design Leader with an extensive career spanning over 20 years. He specializes in creating intuitive and accessible digital experiences, successfully leading projects from concept to launch. Magued excels in merging user needs with business goals, fostering innovative design solutions. Beyond his professional achievements, Magued is committed to educating the next generation of UX designers as an instructor affiliated with the University of Toronto. 

Proposed Project: Magued will offer his expertise in leading a project where the team will design a website and app that will offer desktop based and mobile based experiences for a fictional client.

Marin Hudson RGD

Marin is a community-minded designer who finds joy in all things creative and in connecting and supporting others. From designing an annual report to crafting the perfect pizza, she thrives in collaborating with a team to make ideas come to life. With a background in linguistics and working with vulnerable populations, Marin finds ease in getting to really know her clients and listening both to what they say and what they mean. Marin is also a part-time professor at Mohawk College

Proposed Project: Marin will lead the team in creating a brand identity for a non-profit organization.

Meg Lynch RGD

Meg is a design leader with more than 15 years of experience in the design industry. In her most recent role as Design Director at Forge Media + Design, she led a team of designers in developing impactful design and strategic solutions. With a passion for creating brand stories that are simple, smart and accessible to all, Meg strives to deliver meaningful design outcomes that make a difference. 

Proposed Project
: Meg will lead the team in creating a brand identity for a kids' STEM day camp experience. A primary identity will be created along with sub-brands to reflect a few focus areas of the camp (science, technology, engineering and math).

Michael Barker RGD

Since starting his career as a graphic design professional with Bruce Mau Design in 1999, Michael has worked for a variety of institutions in the public, creative and cultural sectors including working as an in-house designer for the University of Toronto, the Toronto International Film Festival and the Toronto Wildlife Centre. He founded Acme Art and Design in 2008, working collaboratively with clients to craft work that is as considerate of the conceptual and cultural dimensions of the project as with the minutest details of production. 

Proposed Project: Michael will be leading a project focused on creating a poster campaign addressing a topic of concern in their local area (a topic to be agreed upon by the team). The team will be asked to install the print poster(s) in a real-world location and produce digital products (stills, posts, videos) from the real-world poster installations.

Raymond Cheah RGD

Raymond Cheah RGD is an award-winning creative director and graphic designer with over 20 years of expertise in brand stewardship and strategic graphic design leadership across various sectors such as education, healthcare and consumer tech. Previously, he held the role of Creative Director at CIFAR and senior design roles at U of T Engineering and Kobo Rakutan, where he provided visionary guidance and mentored the in-house design team, leveraging digital, video and print mediums to craft engaging narratives and innovative design strategies. 

Proposed Project: Raymond will be leading a project that focuses on developing a visually engaging and informative website for Horizon Point Camp that communicates its mission of providing inclusive summer camps for children with disabilities.

Susan Yang RGD

With 18 years of experience, Susan has worked with a diverse roster of clients and brands in several industries providing strategic, creative and technical solutions. With end-to-end execution, she effectively helps translate brands and business objectives that shape and innovate. Her expertise encompasses a wide range of disciplines including concept development, information architecture, digital experiences, brand strategy and identity systems, digital accessibility and video production. Susan is the Principal and Creative Director at Padometric Studio

Proposed Project: Susan will lead a project focused on a website redesign of a non-profit organization. The key focus points will be on further developing their existing brand, creating intuitive, engaging and responsive UI/UX designs and adhering to accessibility best practices.

Taralyn Carver RGD

Through design and creative direction, Taralyn makes beautiful experiences for my clients and their audience. At BOLD LIP, Taralyn leads exceptionally talented women and brings seriously fun brands to life. It has been a long time dream of hers to work at a place where creatives, especially women, were granted the time, mentorship and support they need to produce outstanding work. In 2020, alongside longtime colleague Joanne Gallop, Taralyn has been able to not only work at that place, she was able to co-create it. 

Proposed Project: Taralyn will be leading a project related to brand identity.

Tara O’Reilly RGD

Tara is a full-stack designer and branding expert within the healthcare industry. She has been the acting creative director at Alberta Health Services (AHS) in the cancer and chronic disease prevention department since 2015. Focused on social and behaviour change marketing, Tara led the health marketing team in implementing design and production processes, while managing various large branding, print and UI/UX projects for multiple health care clients. Prior to working for AHS, Tara was the creative director for Blackline Safety and YMCA Calgary winning design communications awards for both organizations.  

Proposed Project: Tara will lead the team on a website redesign project for Metabolic Syndrome Canada (MSC).

Victor Szeto RGD

Victor is the Creative Director at Green Living Enterprises. Having worked in various capacities in the graphic design field, Victor brings more than a decade-and-a-half of invaluable knowledge to the table. He is proud and fortunate to constantly be collaborating with passionate and interdisciplinary people where he gets to create, develop and execute a variety of visual communications all the time including environmental graphics, campaigns and branding for the ROM, Cineplex, Scotiabank, TD Bank, Toronto Hydro, the Pembina Institute, University of Toronto, Eva’s Initiatives and the Canadian Journalists for Free Expression. 

Proposed Project: Victor will lead the team in branding the 2025 Excellence in Canadian News Media Gala. The team will be tasked to create a theme for this year, develop the collateral leading up to the Gala and on-site branding of the award ceremony space.

Virginia Quist RGD

Working as an in-house designer for her entire career has given Virginia a unique perspective on graphic design and visual communication. Being part of the organization, allows her to know the ins and outs of the business and have an in-depth understanding of the customers' or clients' needs. This enhances her ability to effectively communicate messages and find new ways to solve problems and connect dots that others may not see. Being an in-house designer has allowed her to embrace being a multi-passionate creative and grow in many ways she never could have expected. 

Proposed Project: Virginia will be leading the team with a project focused on a summer limited edition wine kit sale for a winemaking business located in British Columbia (on-premise winemaking permitted here). It will focus on product packaging and promotional design.

Program Credits: Many thanks to the volunteers who helped develop this program. It was a collaboration between the RGD’s Provisional, Education, Membership and Diversity & Inclusion Committees. Thank you to Brent Roth RGD, Elyse Maxwell RGD, Emma Hodgson Provisional RGD, Erin Grandmaison RGD, Kelly Small RGD, Roxanne Hammond Provisional RGD and Rupsha Mutsuddi Provisional RGD.  

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