SHINE is a four-month mentoring program. The program matches mentors and mentees around the DC design community looking to connect, challenge each other to grow, and collaborate on a project of their choice.

Program details

Kickoff: Mentors and mentees meet up and work hand-in-hand to identify the mentee’s career goals and aspirations. Before leaving, each pair should have determined a schedule for meeting, and begun brainstorming ideas for their project. Over the next four months, mentors provide advice and guidance; you’ll get as much as you put into this process!

Midpoint: Pairs meet back up to connect over roundtable discussions.

Finale: SHINE wraps up in May with a celebration and presentation of projects.

Ready to sign up?

Mentors should have 5+ years of professional experience. Yes, it’s a 4-month commitment, but you can set the pace, meeting place, and method with your mentee.

Mentees should have 1-4 years of experience. The focus of our program is to reach emerging designers who are working in the design field, so we prefer applicants to have finished college or another academic program. Returning mentees who have already participated in SHINE will likely not be considered due to the number of new applicants who are eager to have this opportunity. Over the course of this program, you’ll work with your mentor on a design project of your choice. Should you be matched, you’ll be asked to have goals and project ideas ready to discuss with your mentor.

Applications for the 2023 program have closed.

For information about additional mentorship opportunities, please contact

Thank you to our 2023 Sponsors

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More About SHINE

Learn more about how the SHINE and EMERGE programs can help young designers from SHINE founders Dian Holton and Kerri Sarembock:


Email us at or connect with us our SHINE social accounts: Twitter / Facebook

Past Committee Members

As with all our work, SHINE could not exist without our volunteers. Thank you to all of the individuals who have made the program possible.


Jessica Kerbo, Chair
Chelsae Blackman
Peter Gibb
Sara Suttle


Puneet Kaur, Chair
Chelsae Blackman
Erin Pedati
Koi Hernandez


Mel Charlton, Co-chair
Dian Holton, Co-chair
Chelsae Blackman
Jodie Custudio
Sharon Duke
Nick Fabiani
Dan Rader


Mel Charlton, Chair
Dian Holton
Kerri Sarembock


Kerri Sarembock,Co-chair
Dian Holton, Co-chair
Chris Montwill
Kate Starr


Dian Holton, Co-Chair
Kerri Sarembock, Co-chair

If you see a name is missing, please let us know and we’ll update our records.