April 10, 2013 Interior Design Student Projects Receive Regional, National Recognition

Projects created by UT design students won second and third place at a recent regional design competition.

The students participated in the Interior Design Educators Council (IDEC) Regional Competition. Their work advanced to the national conference and was recognized as two of the top fifteen projects out of 130 entries from across the country.

Interior design seniors Teal Nabors, Abbey Stepanek, and Erin Brelsford won second place for their project, “The Learning Center.” Their peers, seniors Margaret Jamison, Deanna Olson, and Caroline McDonald, won third place for “Learning Landscape.” Both projects addressed the reinvention of college learning spaces by examining how future classrooms in higher education could function through well-considered design.

Similar student research has contributed toward the renovation of the Humanities and Social Sciences building, a secondary school built in Haiti by the College of Architecture and Design, and the UT-Herman Miller Research Studio, a learning space that evaluates how students work, collaborate, and learn.

The IDEC competition is an opportunity to create an awareness of human, economic, environmental, and ethical concerns for future interior designers. Students are charged with creating interior environments that consider socially responsible design and the importance of design in society.

“The biggest challenge with these projects was the short two-week time frame the students had to produce them,” said Jeff Geren, the students’ UT faculty advisor. “Working collaboratively, they had one week to research and a second week for design development and presentation drawings.

“I am very excited for the students because of their consistent strong work ethic.”

The Interior Design Program is a four-year program that leads to a bachelor’s degree. It is the highest ranked program of its kind in Tennessee. Its curriculum focuses on the interior architecture of spaces through the research and design of functional environments.

To learn more about the Interior Design Program, visit the website.

C O N T A C T:

Kiki Roeder (865-974-6713,