Last week Anton Cao stopped by our offices to say hello. I asked him to answer a few questions for the blog’s first alumni profile. This is the first in a series so stay tuned!
Maggie (MB): Tell me about your current job.
Anton Cao (AC): I currently work as an Assistant Language Teacher (of English) in Japan. I work for the Japanese government. This is the first job I’ve gone into since I graduated. My internship continued for a little while after I graduated until I moved to Japan for this one.
MB: Where did you complete your internship (TC 495)?
AC: My internship was at the UW Business school’s Technology Center.
MB: Which of your TC/HCDE skills do you use most frequently in your current position?
AC: The skills I often use in this job differ depending on the task I have at hand. I often make worksheets and aides to assist in teaching class. So learning what aspects makes a document easier to read or understand is pivotal. Making the aides appealing so students are interested in learning is another aspect. When I teach students, the skills I use most are learning to think as a user and tailoring my approach to the level of my students. Not all my students are advanced nor are all my students lagging behind in their English studies. So I have to change my approach and how I convey information depending on who I talk to. If what I’m saying isn’t being conveyed properly, I’ll try a different approach or twist the approach I’m on just a little bit.
MB: What advice do you have for current students?
AC: I have a few points of advice for current undergrads. One is to understand what TC/HDCE is all about and learn how to apply it in your thinking. The classes you take and the things you learn are a way of conveying what the department is about and to get you into the mindset. Understand what our field does and what makes it so key, don’t worry so much if you can’t design a web page really nicely or format a document with ease.
The other point of advice is that our department has applications everywhere. Don’t limit yourself to what is the most common job or the avenues that lay in front of you. Take a look at what you enjoy working with and see how you can apply the knowledge you’ve gained. Technology is a key focus in the department, but I’ve been able to apply what I’ve learned in my job as an English teacher. Our job is to help people, and I think we can do it any field of work.
MB: Thanks Anton! Drop-in in another few years to update us. I hope you continue to enjoy life abroad.
If you are a department alum and would like to be profiled on our blog, or are a current student and would like to conduct an interview with an alum, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.