Sophia Dengo

I work on Vets.gov

Helping Veterans discover, apply for, track and manage the benefits they've earned as part of the excellent Ad Hoc team.

  • Formation: Built on top of the US Web Design System, Formation is Vets.gov's design system. It houses all of our visual patterns and the code that drives them, and is in consistent development as our needs and patterns evolve. I own the system -- I did the research, built the proof of concept, and got buy-in from above, and now I'm responsible for its ongoing growth.
  • Discharge Upgrade Tool: About 7 million Veterans were discharged from the military with "bad paper" -- meaning that their discharge status keeps them from receiving VA benefits they've earned -- as a result of Don't Ask Don't Tell, military sexual trauma, and PTSD, among other circumstances. They might be able to get their status upgraded, and thereby access their benefits, but the process is confusing at best. I designed a new interaction pattern to support the logic tree that guides Veterans through the process, based on their particular circumstances.

You can find me on Github

I'm @phiden, and I contribute mostly to Department of Veterans Affairs repos.

résumé & details

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I like to solve problems and make things useful. I'm currently doing both things on Vets.gov. Previously I did so at the Center for Government Excellence at Johns Hopkins University and Code for America. My toolkit includes UI/UX design, research, and front-end development.

Lately I've been thinking a lot about design systems and pattern libraries, as well as accessibility and designing for inclusion.

Regardless of the challenge, tech stack, and enviornment, I always want to meet people where they are.

Find me online: