CHCI Alumni Highlight — Christina Lidwin
Christina Lidwin (Meaghan Dee, Advisor) is a User Experience Engineer for Google Maps, using her background in design and software engineering to push the boundaries of cartographic- and navigation-based user interface design through prototyping.
At Virginia Tech, Christina studied computer science for her undergraduate degree (with several electives in HCI) and earned a Master in Fine Arts in Creative Technologies from the School of Visual Arts (with a certificate in Human-Centered Design). As a graduate assistant, she worked with FourDesign, a faculty-led, student-run design studio in School of Visual Arts and led software development for Mirror Worlds, an NSF project within the Institute of Creativity, Arts, and Technology.
In her own words: “In my undergraduate studies, Virginia Tech provided me with the opportunity to explore different areas of computer science and discover my excitement for HCI, leading me to explore more visual facets of human-centered design through Creative Technologies to compliment my technical background.
“My work today directly builds on several experiences I feel lucky to have had throughout my education at Virginia Tech in addition to my coursework and assistantships. I studied abroad twice through the University Honors Presidential Global Scholars program and School of Visual Arts, which inspired my love of travel and a more global view on technology and design. My master's thesis, Visual Imprints, also helped me start to understand how I could contribute to the industry with a multi-disciplinary background and experiment with different facets of information.
“Virginia Tech instilled in me a strong belief the best user experiences bring together multiple perspectives, especially through a strong relationship between design and engineering. This belief has become so important to me you can see it reflected in my current role at Google and in the work I do today combining design and engineering skills to build prototypes; through my work, I express new ideas for how we might understand and interact with the world around us.”