Reinventingstudent loans

user experience


Great Lakes is a student loan servicer. Most of their customers are not happy with having to pay back loans. The website is the main way that people interact with Great Lakes and it is imperative that the site is helpful and intuitive.


Front End Coding, UI Design, Branding, Visual Design, Information Architecture

New branding

Great Lakes had an established brand that was very heavy on blue. It had the trustworthy feel of a bank, which was good but not inviting. The goal of creating a new brand was to be more inviting and helpful. To elicit these feelings, large photographs and colorful graphics were added to the site.

The main goals of the site are to make it easier for people to login, make their loan payments, and manage their account. A secondary goal of the site is to educate student loan holders about all of the options they have to pay back their loans. It was important to give equal weight to all of the elements. The robots on the site were original illustrations for this project.

Screenshot of the Great Lakes borrower site

Design & front end coding

The website needed to be responsive and intuitive on all screen sizes. By looking at the analytics, it was apparent that more and more people were using their phones to login and pay. This was why a mobile first approach was taken in design as well as development. This project also uses relative breakpoints to let the content decide when it should change and not pixel size.


Many people do not realize that websites, like buildings, need to be accessible to users with limitations or disabilities. So when building a site, it is important to be aware that visual clues like color or graphics are not seen by a blind person using a screen reader. Sites must also be accessible by keyboard only and this is something that often trips up sites. This site was made to be accessible and usable by all people.

screenshot of homepage

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