An online learning platform designed to empower retirees to stay busy and invested in activities

The work

Branding, UX & UI Design, Content Strategy, Animation, Prototyping

Problems to Solve

People transitioning out of a career lose a major source of their social needs and sense of purpose leading to a loss of identity. This loss of identity related to retirement comes with many downsides, especially since many of the retirees we interviewed echoed the sentiment that:

"Staying busy and invested in activities, whatever they are, is important to a successful retirement.

People retiring often know what they would like to explore once they have the time, but lack the tools of knowing where and how to begin.How might we design a digital product that enhances mental and physical health of retirees?


Product & Brand Delivery

Developed a concept product from ideation to competitive pitch


Contributing users involved with in-depth research including interviews and surveys


Pitches delivered to audiences including investor entrepreneurs

1 yr

Year-long product endeavor leading to skill development across UX/UI and brand


The Baby Boomer Generation, totaling almost 70 million people, has been the backbone of our nation’s workforce for decades. By the year 2030, all baby boomers will have reached the age of 65.


Dawwn is an online learning platform that engages newly retired folks through content that is curated and designed to help retirees learn new things. Dawwn takes a senior-focused learning approach.

What I Did

High-level Process


Discovery Research

Interviews and surveys to understand perspectives of retirees


Clarifying the Problem

Synthesizing information into user personas, journey maps, and actionable statements


Wireframes & Prototyping

Building up from wireframes to hi-fidelity, clickable prototypes


Usability Testing & Presenting

A 2-week Wizard of Oz exercise to understand how a user experiences the app followed by a pitch competition

Discovery Research

Exploring the Problem

Our team of four designers engaged in in-depth interviews with 10 retirees and conducted three extensive surveys, gathering insights from 32 respondents, to uncover perspectives on retirement, enabling us to better understand problems, pain points, and desires of retirees during this stage of life.

Clarifying the problem

Understanding the User and Redefining the Problem

By analyzing the information collected, our team crafted user personas, journey maps, and refined our broad problem statement into an actionable challenge, ensuring our design solutions resonated with our user needs.

Ideating & Prototyping

Wireframes and Hi-Fidelity Prototyping

We engaged in ideation exercises like Crazy 8 and user flows to develop our ideas for a digital app tailored for retirees. We crafted an intuitive information architecture, iterated from rapid low-fidelity prototypes to polished, interactive hi-fidelity versions, ensuring our user-centric app provided the best experience for our target audience.

Usability Testing

Wizard of Oz Testing

To get closer to understanding how a retirees' emotions and experiences may be impacted by our app, we conducted a 2-week Wizard of Oz exercise. Immersing a single user, we orchestrated activities, elicited responses, and received feedback, emulating a fully developed app experience.


New Venture Challenge Competition

With our user-driven updates, mature hi-fidelity prototypes, and a wealth of feedback, we entered the New Venture Challenge to compete for a grand prize of $100,000 and presented our concept to a live audience of over 100 people. While our early round pitches were lauded, the ultimate funding eluded us, but marked a rewarding milestone in our journey nonetheless.



Over 12-months, I learned how to be scrappy and stick with a design problem from start to finish. This case study was a product and brand experience and helped me connect the dots between those two worlds. I learned a lot about collaboration and how to push through challenges and uncertainty in design projects. The final, New Venture Challenge Competition, was an excellent way to get a final critique from experts.

More to explore

Let's work together

If you have an idea or project you want to discuss, feel free to contact me.


© 2023 Cal Brackin Design

Let's work together

If you have an idea or project you want to discuss, feel free to contact me.


© 2023 Cal Brackin Design

Let's work together

If you have an idea or project you want to discuss, feel free to contact me.


© 2023 Cal Brackin Design