By Lutfiah Latiff
Hi! My name is Fia and I’m a Hatch graduate working at MeshMinds.
Initially, I was unsure about joining the Hatch program because it seemed irrelevant to my interests. I dropped out of poly because I felt that I was not growing and saw that work experience could help me clarify what I was passionate about. While working a rather tiring sports retail job, I began contemplating private education options, hoping to further my studies in psychology. For a short while, I enrolled at a private university, but could not complete the course largely due to financial constraints. Nonetheless, I was sure I wanted to start learning again to avoid being stuck in unmotivating part-time jobs. The Hatch Immersive program looked like it could give me what I needed, and I decided to give it a try.
When I first started the program, I was surprised by how much I liked the subjects taught inside. Understanding the UX process helped me develop a much deeper understanding about how we should ask questions to understand users' needs. During the training, we were exposed to many important skills, such as user interviews, problem identification, problem solving, design principles, ideation and simple coding. For my final project, I learnt to build a website from scratch and prototyped a simple game.
Presenting my final project during demo day
It was definitely not an easy transition to adapt back to having a class schedule. I struggled in maintaining a good work-life balance, being almost always late for class as I had a very irregular sleeping cycle. But coming for Hatch meant that I had to learn to manage my time and rest better. During the training, I continued working part-time at a restaurant to earn my allowance. There was stress from both work and Hatch assignments that I had to learn to manage.
But I was greatly inspired and motivated by my trainer, Louis. Louis was always sincere and willing to share his knowledge. He constantly motivated us to strive and push our personal standards. Also, my batchmates were like family to me, even though we came from different walks of life. I was always urged to push on even when I faced challenges. Our friendships grew as we worked on our projects and completed our UI/UX tasks together. I’m also incredibly thankful for the support the Hatch team offered. Whenever I felt like I could not get through the training, they would lend me the emotional and technical support I needed. Eventually, I learnt how to ensure the quality of my work while balancing work and rest.
Louis and my friends!
After my training, Hatch arranged an interview for me with one of its partner companies, MeshMinds. MeshMinds is a creative technology studio partnering with the UN Environment Programme to mobilise creative technology to get closer to achieving its Sustainable Development Goals. The company's specialty is blending the arts with Virtual and Augmented Reality, 3D printing, Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence to create impactful, immersive and engaging experiences for environmentally-responsible companies. Their mission is to create awareness, provoke conversations and encourage behavioural changes for a sustainable future. Today, I am a proud UX Storyteller intern at Meshminds!
Being an intern in a startup has many perks. You’re not just expected to learn the things you have to do based on your position. Everyday, I’m reminded that I am a part of a team that works together to solve real world problems. Everyone’s opinion is valuable and every idea is worth a consideration. Not only do I get to witness the company's growth, I’m also empowered to grow with it. It is exciting to watch our work at the company impact our community. It’s very fast paced and sometimes, it might all seem a little too crazy! But MeshMinds is a joy to be in because of the bond we have as a team. Through regrouping sessions, we took a glimpse into each other’s projects and that created opportunities for us to collaborate and support each other. I really love being an intern at MeshMinds and of course, given the chance, I would definitely be happy to continue as a full-time staff!
All in all, I learnt a lot in my journey with Hatch. I learnt the basic and technical UI/UX skills and I learnt a lot of soft skills too, such as self-confidence and the importance of punctuality. Hatch has truly been a memorable and significant turning point in my life as it made me realise my worth and potential. It reignited my fire to start chasing my dreams. To those considering enrolling in the Immersive, here’s my advice to all of you - Regardless of what you’ve had to face, it's never too late to start chasing your dreams again. No dream is too big; as your soul has a passion for it, you can chase it!
About the author
Lutfiah Latiff is a UI/UX designer and a Hatch alumni. She is now completing her internship as a UX storyteller at MeshMinds. A passionate and ambitious learner, Lutfiah has a knack for communicating with and understanding users. She loves travelling and exploring! Whether it is exploring places, histories, concepts, ideas, or experimenting with many forms of creative media, Lutfiah is always raring to try!
We are very proud to see the progress that Lutfiah has made on her personal growth journey and in pursuing her passion. Her drive and willingness to step out of her comfort zone is an inspirational reminder that we need to actively seek out for what we love. It has been a privilege to have walked this journey with her. Many of the students that we work with, like Lutfiah, come from all walks of life, but they all joined Hatch to pursue a career that they are interested and motivated in. We are committed to continue this work and extend our impact to more in time to come.