Student Story - Michel Lopez
Michel is a twenty-three-year-old student that hails from Mexico City to join the Interaction Design course at Harbour.Space University with big ideas in mind - to change the world through education.
Michel Lopez sat wrapped in an oversized red hoodie, dashed with a lightning bolt. “This is my brainstorming hoodie. Whenever some serious thinking needs to get done, I wear this,” he smiles/chuckles. It was extremely fitting for him to sport a hoodie with ‘The Flash’ logo, as Michel is sort of like the Flash himself. He is hyper creative, obsessively focused and has the best heart. His passion for people and design is conveyed in every project he completes, alongside his approach to interaction design as a whole, which is the epitome of ‘human centered’. Michel is a twenty-three-year-old student that hails from Mexico City to join the Interaction Design course at Harbour.Space University with big ideas in mind - to change the world through education. Now he finds himself in Barcelona, smack bang in the middle of tech and design central.
Would you call yourself a designer?
“That is a good question,” he laughs. Michel grew up in a town in the north of Mexico, where design is not seen as important. “People go more for administration and business. So, I never had a design or art class at school. I was so blind.” He was geared for an economics degree at ITAM (Autonomous Technological Institute of Mexico), the same university his dad graduated from. “It was more of a legacy thing.” But he was unsatisfied with the classes, the university and the teachers, so he left after one semester. Then he found his calling and enrolled himself in a Marketing and Advertising Bachelor’s degree at CENTRO Design College in Mexico City. “Every time I got a new class it opened my eyes into humans. Not seeing gender, not seeing age, not seeing preference, but humans and making products for them.” Four years down the line he graduated and became a lecturer at that very same school, teaching first years about principles of marketing and digital media. “The first day I stood up there by myself, I found my vocation. I found what I want to do. I want to teach and I fell in love with helping people.”
Michel is wildly interested in experience design and how design intersects with education. This is what led him to pursue a Master’s degree in Interaction Design – a field built around designing for people and places with emphasis on the human user and their relationship with objects and technology. He decided to leave his flourishing design studio and his teaching job behind in Mexico City to challenge himself to something new.
“It’s pretty funny story actually. I Googled it. I was checking the SEO of my own studio site, Space is a Place, and Harbour.Space popped up. And when I saw the website I knew I was doomed, because I knew it was the place I needed to be.””
He was particularly attracted by the portfolio of the Interaction Design’s Head of Department, Irene Pereyra. “Seeing the work done by Anton and Irene really inspired me, because my partner is also a woman and I believe the work we do and how we communicate design is because we’re not gender bias. And I wanted to learn from them.” Michel says he is fond of the teaching system employed here. His previous design school was also a start-up in its infancy, but he has watched it grow with pride. He expects to do the same with Harbour.Space. “I like the education system at Harbour.Space, especially the three-week course model, as they are engaging, focused and productive.”
Keeping true to his benevolent superhero nature, Michel hopes to return home after his year abroad to improve the system of education in Mexico. “It’s education – that’s the future. If you think about people and society – it’s all in education.” “For me, where do I see myself in 15 years? I see myself as Secretary of Education in Mexico.”