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Industry & Alumni

Alumni Leadership Board FAQ

Frequently asked questions about the Alumni Leadership Board in the Department of Human Centered Design & Engineering:


What does ALB stand for?
Alumni Leadership Board

When was ALB started?
The Department of Human Centered Design & Engineering formed an Alumni Leadership Board in January 2019.

What is the mission of ALB?
The HCDE Alumni Leadership Board (ALB)’s mission is to foster an alumni and student community, build career connections, and provide industry skill-sharing outside the academic curriculum. Through a variety of deliverables ranging from events to evergreen content, the board will work to further the HCDE and UX community in Seattle and beyond. The board activates talented alumni who have a desire to give back to the next generation of HCDE graduates and build the HCDE network for years to come.

What is the history of the ALB?
Read more about the formation of the HCDE Alumni Leadership Board in 2020

Is ALB affiliated with the UW alumni association?
No, ALB is not part of the UW Alumni association. It is an independent organization under the HCDE department.

Is ALB affiliated with HCDE department?
Yes, we are affiliated with the HCDE department. We collaborate with the department regularly to organize events for alumni.

What does ALB do?
The Alumni Leadership Board supports the HCDE Alumni through the continuing education series, Medium publication, and newsletter. We are also working on a networking and mentoring series. 


How can I get in touch with ALB?
We are always eager to hear from our alumni community and have a few ways to get in touch with us. You can send us an email at or reach out to any of the board members listed here. If you are a student, you can reach out to Melissa Ewing, HCDE's outreach and events manager at


Is there a fee for the membership?
No, we don't believe in charging people to be part of a community. However, we do appreciate any donations to ALB's fund. It allows us to keep offering opportunities for alumni to learn and connect with each other.

What is the process for becoming a member?
Each spring there is an application process. We send out an invitation for alumni to apply for the Board. The only requirement is that you are an alumni of HCDE or TC for at least a year. The applications are reviewed by the current board and HCDE department liaisons to select the next cohort.

What is expected from the potential members?
The ALB members function as a small team (~10-15 members, including the UW HCDE staff liaison) and are expected to work together to mentor students, plan and teach skill-honing workshops, support HCDE for departmental needs (e.g., M.S. Application reviews, events.), and host community-building events.

What does the ALB look for in a candidate?
We look for a diverse set of candidates who are dedicated, excited, and passionate about building up the HCDE Alumni community. 

What Positions are in the ALB?
Positions are: President, Internal Vice President, External Vice President, and Treasurer. You may also join one or more subcommittees, including: Continuing Education, Alumni Connections, or Publishing. 

Can graduates of any of the HCDE programs join the board?
Yes, we accept membership applications from alumni of all HCDE and TC degree programs which include bachelors, masters, PhD, and certificate. 

How soon after graduating can I apply for board membership?
We ask for a minimum of 1 year after graduation.

What is the term of board members?
The total term for a board member is 1.5 years or 3 semesters. The first semester overlaps with the last year's board members, the second semester the current board works alone, and the third semester overlaps with the next year's board members.

How often do members meet?
The board meets once a month for at most two hours and operates with sub-committees to plan various endeavors, including continuing education, mentorship, resource sharing, and event planning. The sub-committees can also organize their own monthly meeting to plan their activities.

How many hours a week do you have to commit to?
We expect the time commitment to be approximately 6-8 hours per month. For example: 

  • 2 hours per month for board meetings (with potential for additional planning meetings prior to fall quarter)
  • 2-4 hours per month for each individual activity – workshop, event planning, etc.
  • 2 hours per month for attending HCDE departmental or ALB planned events


Who is the primary target audience of ALB?
The ALB focuses on alumni of the department of Human Centered Design & Engineering at the University of Washington, future alumni, and the larger UX community.

Are current students allowed to participate in ALB activities?
Current students are welcome to attend events and activities like seminars and connection events meant for current students and the general public. 

Is the participation open to all degree programs?
We encourage alumni who graduated from all HCDE/TC degrees to participate. Although our primary purpose is to serve the alumni community, we are an inclusive organization and invite participation from students as well as non-HCDE-affiliated people.

Where do I find out about the upcoming events?
To be informed about upcoming events, publications, and opportunities for you to connect with us, you can sign up for the HCDE ALB newsletter.

What type of events does the ALB run?
The ALB runs a variety of events primarily focused on continuing education and networking. 

Where do I find past content, events?
We have articles and links to content on our Medium and our YouTube channel

Do you have a Calendar of events?
Not yet, but you can check the HCDE website, our events are listed on their calendar. We also encourage you to subscribe to our mailing list to receive announcements about our upcoming events.