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Featured Students and Alumni

Ashley Austin


Ashley Austin ‘19 discovered her passion for entrepreneurship through her coursework completing an entrepreneurship certificate from Farley and a master’s degree in Media Innovation and Entrepreneurship from Medill. During her time at Northwestern, Ashley learned how to code for the first time and launched a startup, Juice Pooch, with her teammates from NUvention Web + Media that went on to become a semi-finalist at Venture Cat.

“Growing up, I never thought that I could code. At the schools I went to in Michigan, there were usually only one or two girls out of thirty students in the computer science classes. I didn’t think that I belonged. It was Northwestern that changed that for me.” 

She went on to study responsive design, core user experience principles, and how to enhance a business’s position in the digital landscape at Northwestern. This led her to develop business plans and code for potential businesses, including a cosmetics matching platform utilizing artificial intelligence technology and a portable phone charger rental network company in NUvention Web + Media.  

Ashley Austin credit’s the strategic vision of NUvention Web + Media faculty member and Media Innovation and Entrepreneurship specialization leader, Rich Gordon, with expanding the options for students such as herself to discover new possibilities at the intersection of media, tech, and entrepreneurship in their careers. During her time as a Northwestern student, Ashley worked part-time at the Farley Center on digital marketing for its website and social media channels. Shortly after her Northwestern graduation, Ashley started a position as a Digital Content Author at Northern Trust Bank in their new User Experience team, where she consults with different business unit groups to develop an integrated digital content strategy. 

“Thanks to Northwestern and its innovative focus on entrepreneurship, I have discovered new ways to think about the world. I feel equipped to move forward with my career and to create the future that I have always desired. I would recommend that anyone with a passion for ideas take Farley courses.”

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