How Teacher Mentors Advance Art and Design Career - Jon Kolko

In Chapter 16 of 17 in his 2011 Capture Your Flag interview with host Erik Michielsen, designer and educator Jon Kolko shares how three teachers have been great mentors in his life, shaping his personal and professional approach. The first, his ceramics teacher, teaches him a Buddhist approach to living. The second mentor, Richard Buchanan, founded the Carnegie Mellon design school and influences Kolko in his writings. The third mentor, Robert Fee, mentors Kolko while he teaches at the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD). There Kolko learns to treat teaching challenges as design problems. Kolko is the executive director of design strategy at venture accelerator, Thinktiv ( He is the founder and director of the Austin School for Design ( Previously, he worked at frog design and was a professor of Interactive and Industrial Design at the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD). He has authored multiple books on design. Kolko earned his Masters in Human Computer Interaction (MHI) and BFA in Design from Carnegie Mellon University.