Jan 18, 2017
Alumni Spotlight: Ande La Monica
I have been amazingly fortunate in my professional career. I’m an award-winning strategist and creative director with proven commercial success leveraging brand development and design to drive innovation, increase business growth, and solve critical business problems.
Currently, I’m the Global Brand & Design Strategist for General Electric. I’m responsible for design strategy of GE’s brand expression as a top 10 global brand valued at $42B. I use my expertise in strategy and design to drive the the brand forward.
Day to day, I work with business units, designers, and creative agencies translating corporate strategy into powerful storytelling. I lead workshops with leadership, cross functional teams, and external partners to solve problems critically, strategically, and creatively. I also develop and mentor talent to help them work better individually, together, and at scale.
My thesis was a great experience. I developed a film and media program that made Shakespeare accessible to pop culture. In a sense, I dusted off a 400 year old brand and made it relevant to today’s culture. It gained interest from two established organizations. I also successfully leveraged my thesis into more projects in film and media production which became a steady source of work after I graduated and was running my agency.
MFA Design's “Do It All” approach is incredibly valuable. As oppose to other design programs that tend to be very niche or specific, the learning from the SVA MFAD program are both wide and deep. You learn so much about so many aspects of design from true visionaries in the profession. Most importantly, going through the program instills the confidence that you can handle whatever challenges are presented to you.
My first month at GE, I was presented with an opportunity to develop visual brand strategy and execution for a new $5B business venture in a few weeks. This included the naming strategy, logo development, and brand & website guidelines. The SVA MFAD program empowers you to not only say “Yes, I can do that.” but do it efficiently and successfully.
What advice would I give a incoming student?
- Work hard.
- Ask lots of questions.
- Share meals with people.
- Experience new things.
- Be empathetic.
- Show gratitude.
- Be a good partner to your classmates.
- Embrace challenges.
- Be less critical more often.
- Do the right thing by people.