IDEO U

About IDEO U

There’s no shortage of challenges to tackle in the world. We believe the world needs more creative leaders to solve these challenges. IDEO U is an online school where anyone can unlock their creative potential through design thinking and collaboration.

We’re a part of IDEO, an award-winning global design firm that takes a human-centered, design-based approach to helping organizations innovate and grow. We take a similar approach to online learning at IDEO U. We’re all about serving and supporting our students by giving them a unique set of skills and mindsets.

We’ve designed a playful and collaborative online learning experience that enables individuals, teams, and communities to see the world differently and solve problems in new ways.  

Meet the Team

SUZANNE GIBBS HOWARD
DEAN

Suz is a Partner at IDEO and the founder of IDEO U. She’s big into experiential learning and how it can transform individuals and organizations, and imagines a world where anyone can build the creative confidence to solve real world challenges. When not at one of our IDEO offices, you might find her sailing with her family, traveling around the globe, or singing in her garage band. Connect with Suz on Twitter @suzhoward.

KATIE ALBA
PRODUCT MANAGER

Katie is a Product Manager at IDEO U with experience scaling social enterprise start-ups, designing human-centered learning experiences and building global brands. She’s believes in the power of community to find new and bold ways to solve challenges in the world. When not in the studio or traveling in the field, you can find Katie practicing her novice birding skills in the woods or teaching English as a Second Language to relocated refugee families (with pop music!). Connect with Katie on Twitter @albakatie.

MADELINE ARMSTRONG
LEADERSHIP COMMUNITY COORDINATOR

Before joining the IDEO U team, Madeline taught and mentored students both in the SF Bay Area and abroad, gaining a wide array of international education experience. She is focused on people, and loves creating communities that collaborate and unify over shared experiences. She'll also take the chance any day to travel, dance, make lists, and ask curious questions.  Connect with Madeline on Twitter @Madeline_IDEOU.

HILARY BRASETH
ASSISTANT PRODUCER

Hilary is the assistant producer of IDEO U's educational content. In former lives, she walked the halls of Congress, built a Guinean waste system from scratch, sang a cappella, and co-founded a youth social entrepreneurship startup in West Africa. She's all about learning from the edges as a process for growth and enjoys writing about it in her personally decorated, moleskine journals.

 

KAT CHANOVER
PRODUCER & ART DIRECTOR

Kat is creative producer and designer who has worked in hi-tech, consumer products, and film. Fun fact: she landed her first job out of college at PIXAR and spent twelve years there! She loves bringing ideas to life and making sure that our video content is always polished, inspiring, and playful. She’s also a music aficionado, aspiring DJ, and proud mother of two.

EM HAVENS
COMMUNITY DESIGNER

Em is a community designer with a background in leadership education and social finance. She's tackled innovation challenges in a wide variety of contexts, from venture philanthropy to healthcare technology, and was a founding member of a small organizational design firm. When not at work, you're likely to find Em rollerblading to the beach and choreographing dance moves on her rooftop.

 

 

KAREN HOLST
PLATFORM & OPERATIONS DIRECTOR

Karen is an entrepreneur, the co-founder of an edtech startup, and leading biz ops at IDEO U. She's all about taking on new challenges, like running marathons, long-distance swims for charity, and creating a game-changing product for IDEO U. She believes in "taking life by the horns" and has an insatiable curiosity for new people, new places, and new ideas. Connect with Karen on Twitter @kholst.

DANOOSH KAPADIA
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT LEAD

Danoosh is the business development lead at IDEO U. He's passionate about helping individuals and organizations grow and learn new skills. When he's not helping to build our business, you might spot him riding his shiny, green bike around SF or prototyping ways to make his newborn son giggle.

MARK MAGELLAN
WRITER & LEARNING EXPERIENCE DESIGNER

Mark is a writer and learning experience designer. Before joining IDEO U, he taught research methods and organized communities at the grassroots level, so he's pretty into people empowerment and searching for innovative ways to create change. He's also a total poetry geek, intrepid traveler, and creative storyteller.

GEOFF SCHWARTEN
DIGITAL MARKETING LEAD

Geoff leads digital marketing for IDEO U. He brings a wealth of experience in growing startups and social enterprises. He's worked in North America, South America, and Africa, and one day hopes to knock off the next four continents (yes, even Antarctica). Outside of work, you might find him hiking, surfing, or taking in a California sunset with his wife and toddler. Connect with Geoff on Twitter @geoffschwarten.


KALEIGH WALLS
LEARNER ENGAGEMENT COORDINATOR

Kaleigh is the learner engagement coordinator at IDEO U. Before her days supporting our learners, she worked in both hospitality and tech support. When she’s not at Pier 28, you might find her backpacking, climbing, or curling up with a good read.