Problem-solving, great design, innovation, making a difference are where my passions lie. These interests pointed me toward my graduate studies in human-computer interaction (HCI) at Carnegie Mellon.

My path to HCI though was rather unorthodox but has given me a unique perspective of the field. When I was a college undergrad, I started as a neurobiology major with dreams of becoming a doctor, but I switched majors after meeting renowned psychologist Philip Zimbardo and becoming fascinated with social psychology. Like social psychology, HCI requires a deeper understanding of human behaviors, and asks the researcher or designer to step into someone else’s shoes, which is why I’m so drawn to HCI.

When I interned on the mobile team at PayPal as a UX designer, I realized my passion for connecting products to people. I loved the challenge of creating an emotional connection to customers through discovery (understanding their needs), design (holistic, simple and seamless experiences) and technology.

At CMU, I’m focusing on mobile design because I like the constraints they create and wearables because I’m fascinated by discrete technology.

If I’m not doing design work or thinking up a new app idea, I’m on a foodies adventure, enjoying a San Francisco view with friends, hanging out with my dog Kirby, or shooting hoops at the gym. Thanks for visiting and feel free to contact me (zdkarrasch@gmail.com)!