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Sharon Kong '13

Sharon Kong

MA, Social Design

Class of 2013

When Sharon Kong came to MICA, she wanted to take a step away from design to think about the implications and ethics of the work. She'd just completed her undergraduate studies at Carnegie Mellon School of Design in communication design and writing. She wanted to know more about compassion and empathy in design, and how to measure social change. MASD was a pivotal chapter to gain a greater understanding meaningful work and social responsibility.

Her thesis work focused on ways to assist North Korean escapees during their journey to South Korea. A dual-citizen of the U.S. and South Korea, Sharon spent most of her life in Seoul and observed tense relationships with the neighboring country. For her thesis she traveled to South Korea and conducted in-depth research with local stakeholders. She met members of the Ministry of Unification, Hanawon (rehabilitation center for escapees), activists, and many escapees who were living in South Korea. Her thesis reflected an empathetic and honest understanding of North Korean escapees.

After MASD Sharon co-founded and led creative efforts at emocha, a mobile health startup based in Baltimore. She then went on to join Tomorrow Partners as a UX designer in Berkeley, California.

Today, Sharon works on projects in a variety of fields. As a researcher, strategist, and UX designer, she loves working with communities and wicked problems. From healthcare to education, civic design, and enterprise work, she continues to build a diverse portfolio of social design. Her main queries for design still revolve around building compassion and measuring social change.

This page was last updated on 12/04/2017.