Carola Ponce

Carola Ponce headshot
Leaving behind a Civil War in El Salvador, Carola immigrated to the U.S. at the age of thirteen. She has a unique perspective as an immigrant and bicultural individual when it comes to gaining empathy and voicing the needs of users. Using User-Centered-Design, she is able to show a variety of life stories and collect data that can be used to identify the user needs; A skill she uses in her professional role, as a Principal Designer at tEQuitable, an Oakland startup with a confidential and independent platform that addresses issues of bias, discrimination, and harassment in the workplace.
Prior to tEQuitable, she works as a Design Strategist on products that aim to solve problems for vulnerable populations. She joined the U.S Digital Service in 2016, an initiative by President Obama to bring Tech Industry’s experts to improve the government services that are most needed and impact the most amount of people, such as Immigration, Education and Veteran Services.
Pre-government, Carola specialized in product conceptualization and development, leading interactive end-to-end experiences for over ten years in a wide array of consumer and customer-facing products for new brands as well as fortune 500 companies.
She graduated from Cal Poly University with a degree in Graphic Design and earned a Master’s Degree at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program, where she focused on interactive tools for presenting human narratives of displacement and migration. Carola has been featured in Mic among the top 1,000 tech and science speakers who aren’t men.
When not designing, Carola enjoys navigating different creative urban spaces and ethnic dance practices; As well as taking long walks around Oakland with her dog Laika.

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