WSU Interior Design Students Take Honors in National Competition
Barb Chamberlain, WSU Spokane/WSU News Service, 509/358-7527, firstname.lastname@example.org
SPOKANE, Wash. -- Washington State University interior design students were awarded first and third place in the national design competition sponsored by the Institute of Store Planners.
Graduate student Meaghan Beever took the first place honor, while student Katie Anderson took third in the competition, which featured 72 student entries. Both students received a cash award and the WSU interior design program will receive an additional $1,000 for sending the winning entry.
The WSU interior design program has been particularly successful in this competition in past years. Kate Hauge took second place in 2003, and Jamie Herring was the Grand Prize winner in 2002.
Beever and Anderson will see their designs published in the July issue of Design and Display Ideas. Their winning entries were senior capstone projects produced in a 10-week design studio course taught by John Turpin, associate professor of interior design, and Judy Theodorson, adjunct faculty member who serves as director of the Daylighting Lab Spokane at WSU Spokane’s Interdisciplinary Design Institute.
“Our faculty believe these competitions are extremely valuable to students,” Turpin said. “First, students are exposed to the critical eye of practitioners, or at least a juror other than their professors. Second, the students start to think outside of their own studio environment. It is no longer a question of, ‘Is my design better than my peers,’ but simply, ‘Is it the best I can possibly do?’ Finally, should the student be successful in the competition. The most significant reward may be the entry on their resume.”
He added that the success rate of WSU students in design competitions demonstrates the high quality of the university’s interior design program.
The objective of the institute’s competition was to design a 28,000-square-foot electronic retail space for a “big-box” store. The challenge to the students was to rebrand or totally reimage the company, to improve the effectiveness of the design in conveying the brand, and to address operational and merchandising needs within the store.
Beever’s first place design, "enCORE," was inspired by the drama of theater, creating a shopping experience where the retail environment becomes a stage for human expression and for exploration of the interface between technological potential and human creativity.
Beever is in her second year of study in a three-year master’s program designed for students who have an undergraduate degree in a nondesign-related field and wish to move into interior design. She holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from
“The opportunity to work on the premier publication of scholarly research in our field with Dr. Thompson and scholars around the country who are contributing to the field of interior design is irreplaceable,” Beever said. “I really enjoy the conceptual development of a project or understanding the theory behind design.”
After completing her degree, Beever plans to seek work in an academic setting or contribute to interior design literature.
“Under the instruction of Judy Theodorson, I was fully pushed to explore the creative doors that open when rethinking retail,”
Anderson, who just finished her bachelor’s degree in interior design, plans to begin her professional career in
The interior design program at WSU was ranked eighth in the nation in 2005 by Design Intelligence magazine, in their annual survey of design professionals. The program is the only undergraduate program in
WSU offers what is believed to be the nation’s only articulated bachelor’s/master’s degree program in interior design, allowing students to complete both degrees in five years with an intensive course of study. Interior design students begin their studies as undergraduates at the
The design institute advances knowledge to enhance the quality of people's lives in the built and natural environment through interdisciplinary instruction, research and community service in design and construction. Faculty and students at the Design Institute regularly win state, national, and international design competitions for their work.
--Interior Design: www.bainteriordesign.spokane.wsu.edu
--Interdisciplinary Design Institute: www.idi.spokane.wsu.edu
--WSU Interior Design Program Ranked Among Nation’s Top 10 (Jan. 6, 2005): http://wsunews.wsu.edu/detail.asp?StoryID=4960