Tag Archives: IIDA Students

Q&A: 2011 IIDA Student Sustainable Design Competition Winner, Katie Goodman

In honor of the 2012 IIDA Student Sustainable Design Competition, we’ve caught up with a past winner of the competition!  In 2011, a team consisting of Katie Goodman, Liz Kahn, Jennifer Madden, and Sarah Martin, all from Drexel University won the competition for the Drexel Smarthouse.  We had a Q&A with one of the winners, Katie Goodman, and here’s what she told us about what she’s been up to since then!

Q: University Attended?

A: I graduated from DrexelUniversity in June [2012]

Q: Where do you currently work?

 A: At the moment I am looking for a job in retail design while doing some freelance work on the side.

Q: What year did you win the Student Sustainable Design Competition?

A: December 2011

Q: What was your initial reaction when you won the Student Sustainable Design competition?

A:  Upon winning the SSDC I was absolutely shocked.  I wasn’t anticipating anything at all.

Q: What inspired you to enter the competition?

A: My teammates on the project discovered the competition and thought it would be great exposure for the project and the Drexel Smarthouse as a whole.  As a member of IIDA I thought it would be a wonderful idea and fun to try our luck with a project we spent so much time and passion for.

Q: What inspired you to pursue Interior Designer? 

A: I have always been passionate about architecture and design as a whole.  I have always found myself looking at space as a three dimensional puzzle and I was drawn to Interior Design through the combination of these passions.

Q: What have you been up to since winning the competition (work, school, etc.) and tell us about that experience?

A: Since winning in December I have received my masters in interior architecture + design.  Upon graduating I took a trip to Colombia to visit a friend with an architectural/engineering company.  While there I had an unforgettable experience and a chance to learn about design and architecture in South America.

Q: If you could give one piece of advice to this year’s entrants, what would it be?

A: One piece of advice I would have is to think outside the box.  Through my experiences with Drexel Smarthouse we pushed ourselves to think further outside our comfort zone and it has definitely paid off.

A plan for the Drexel Smarthouse, winner of the 2011 Student Sustainable Design Competition.

To view more photos of their winning project, click here.

It’s not too late to enter the 2012 IIDA Student Sustainable Design Competition.  Submissions are being accepted until November 15!  Click here for your entry form!  And click here to see entries that have already been submitted.

Voting begins on the last day submissions are being accepted, November 15!


Pain Free Ways to Stay Productive Over the Summer

I know. I get it.  It’s July and the last thing on our minds is probably school or our future career—or at least we pretend that it’s not in our thoughts.  But there are plenty of painless ways to stay productive over the summer!

  • Work on Your Online Portfolio-  Whether your studying Interior Design, business management, a combination of the two or almost anything really, an online portfolio is now an essential part of the rat race.  Sure, you may not yet be asked for it at every interview, but wouldn’t you rather say you have it?  Having one comprehensive place that displays your best work in one easy to access place is invaluable. Check out Wix, they offer creative templates for easy to make online portfolios.  Bonus: Most of it’s free!
  • Make a Job Hunt Routine- Whether you’re seeking full-time employment or an internship opportunity, make it a habit to check your resources regularly.  Resources include your schools’ internship database and checking in with your local IIDA chapter for leads.  It doesn’t have to be on a daily basis, but make it a habit to check every Tuesday and  Thursday—as long as you have a schedule that works for you. Letting time slip away and not checking for new opportunities could easily set you up for missed connections
  • Learn the Ins and Outs of LinkedIn- Or even just make one if you haven’t done so yet.  LinkedIn is a vast land that can be learned over time, a lot of times by simply using it, other times by typing in “How to use LinkedIn…” on google.  One thing is simple: Connect with those you know, especially if they are in your industry.  Start there and run with it.  Make sure to keep in touch with the connections you make, otherwise, what’s the point?
  • Get Inspired- Simple enough, right?  There are a ton of little things around us daily that can inspire us.  There are entire blogs dedicated to getting you off the couch and into your dreams.  Just take a moment to breath it all in and to smell the flowers.  It is still summer after all!

Key Job Strategies for Grads in the New Year

So you’ve made a New Year’s resolutions to update your resume and find the job of your dreams, pronto. We can help! IIDA is bringing you tips and insider advice on how to land the job you want and some important steps along the way.

1.       Get Connected.

  • LinkedIn is great place to network with people and setup informational interviews. Join your alumni association and any other relevant groups to your field that will have job postings, networking events and discussion boards to steer you in the right direction.

2.      Do Your Homework.

  • Employers don’t respond well to a generic cover letter.  Be specific. Why do you want work for their company? What do you know about their work? And what can you offer them? Bonus points if you can find someone who works there and talk to that person before an interview or while applying for the job.

3.      Ace the Cover Letter.

  • Try starting your cover letter off with a compliment.  Acknowledge any good news that you are able to find on the employer’s Web site in their press section. For example, “Dear Tim, Congratulations on the Green Building Award the city bestowed on your new headquarters” is more likely to get a manager’s attention.
  • Include your key skills and where you learned a particular skill, how it helped you in the past or how it will help your work in the future.


4.   Create a Strong Resume. 

  • Your resume should be a single page.
  • Find the right format. Look online at other resumes to see the best way to create yours.
  • Opening statement: The first 1-2 line paragraph should highlight specialized skills, key accomplishments and your career goals.
  • Put your most relevant work experience first. It doesn’t have to be in chronological order. Employers are looking at what you can bring to the table.
  • The best resumes describe experience using Action-Benefit statements, which describe an action you took in response to a challenge or opportunity and then explain how that action had a positive outcome.  Example: “Researched structural problems (situation) and developed a plan (action) that resolved 80% of the issues.” (outcome)
  • Use action verbs. Examples include: managed, launched, created, directed, established, organized, and supervised.
  • Make sure it’s easy to read by using bullet points.
  • Remember to stand out. Include information that is relevant and unique to you. Such as your summer volunteering trip or semester abroad and hobbies.
  • Proofread and spell check! Have someone else read over you resume to catch any errors.

5.    Prepare for the Interview.

  • Prepare at least three stories that can help show why you’d be the right fit for the position, but don’t be rehearsed.

Some examples include:

  • A time you overcame adversity (at a job or at school).
  • A time when you had to work on a team with difficult people.
  • A time when you had to multitask to meet multiple deadlines.

6.      Write a Thank You Note.

  • Emails are an acceptable form for a thank you, but handwritten notes have a special touch that shows you put in just a little extra effort.

If you’re ready to dive in and get your career going don’t miss out on IIDA’s Student Mentoring Week Feb. 20-24, 2012! Students will be paired with industry professionals to learn the inner workings of the design field. Sign up now!


IIDA Events at NeoCon 2009


“IIDA at NeoCon ® 2009: See the Future…Be the Future
For 15 years, NeoCon has been IIDA’s annual conference. This year, the International Interior Design Association will provide an engaging range of events and presentations, all fashioned to yield a discerning glimpse into The Future of Design. From serious contemplation to laugh-out-loud game interaction, IIDA presents a strong lineup of events.”

As NeoCon is quickly approaching, all of us here at IIDA HQ are frantically working to make sure that we get all of our projects done and events planned to make this years World Trade’s Fair a success. As I’m sure most of you already know, there are going to be a variety of seminars, showrooms, and new products launched right here at the Merchandise Mart in Chicago in just two weeks. Mark your calendars everybody! NeoCon events start Saturday, June 13th for Chapter presidents and IIDA members, but is open to the public Monday, June 15th, through Wednesday June 17th. Registration is FREE and can be done at neocon.com!

A complete list of everything that will be going on during NeoCon can also be found on the website. Although most are FREE, a couple events and seminars  have small fees, but if you’re a member you can get DISCOUNTS! Wanna become a member of International Interior Design Association? A complete list of the events, descriptions, prices and contact information for IIDA’s events at NeoCon, as well as registration to become a new member can be found on the IIDA website.  For those of you who want a quick run-down of IIDA’s events I’ve listed the basic info. below:

IIDA’s Chapter Leadership Council (CLC), Meetings and Workshops
Saturday, June 13, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. at IIDA Headquarters, Suite 567 and Sunday, June 14, 8:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. at IIDA Headquarters, Suite 567

IIDA presents Twista!
Throughout NeoCon, June 13 – 15, 10am – 4pm daily at IIDA Headquarters, Suite 567

IIDA/Contract Magazine Showroom & Booth Design Competition Sunday, June 14, 8 a.m. – Noon at Showrooms and Booths in the Mart and IIDA Headquarters. Deadline for entry: May 22, 2009

IIDA Annual Business Meeting
Sunday, June 14, 1:30-3:30 p.m. at the Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 E. Chicago Ave., enter at Pearson St.

COOL 2009, IIDA Black Tie Celebration
Sunday, June 14, 7:00-11:30 p.m. at the Westin Chicago, River North

IIDA/NeoCon Keynote Speaker Address
Monday, June 15, 7:30 a.m. at the Holiday Inn Mart Plaza

IIDA Forum Advisors Presentation: Trends for the Future of Design

Monday, June 15, 9:30-10:30 a.m. at IIDA Headquarters, Suite 567

IIDA College of Fellows VIP Reception
Monday, June 15, 3-4 p.m.
at IIDA Headquarters, Suite 567

Applied Brilliance at IIDA: The Future of Design
Speaker: Dr. Jim Taylor, Futurist and Vice Chairman, Harrison Group
Tuesday, June 16, 10 a.m. at IIDA Headquarters, Suite 567

Legislative Roundtable
Tuesday, June 16, Noon-1 p.m.
at IIDA Headquarters, Suite 567

Stories from a Classic, featuring Herman Miller’s Hilda Longinotti
Tuesday, June 16, 3-4 p.m. at IIDA Headquarters, Suite 567

Pecha Kucha Night
Tuesday, June 16, 5:30-8 p.m. at English, 444 N La Salle Blvd.

United by Design: IIDA Government Forum
Wednesday, June 17, 7:30 a.m.-Noon at IIDA Headquarters, Suite 567

IIDA Student Series Program: Magazine Panel
Wednesday, June 17, 11 a.m.-Noon at IIDA Headquarters, Suite 567

D.4.21 Social Networking Event post-NeoCon
Wednesday, June 17, 5:30- 8:30 p.m.
at IIDA Headquarters, Suite 567



Student Spotlight: Interior Design Magazines


Today’s post comes from Lisa of Michigan State University. She currently authors Juxtaposition Design Blog, click here to visit her site.

As interior design students, with a wide variety of focuses and taste, yet a common need for inspiration and exploration, it is often that we turn to interior design magazines for assistance. Titles such as “Interior Design” and “Architectural Digest” are usually some of the first to come to mind. But, this got me wondering what other resources were out there? After some much needed research, I have found that there is a variety of interior design magazines available and I wanted to be able to share this list with other students to use as a resource!

General Interior Design Magazines:

  • Frame – This contemporary design magazine is really cutting-edge and focuses on bringing their readers amazing photos of newly created interiors worldwide, in-depth articles on recently created commercial interiors and their designers, and the latest in product design. The downside is that this is a European magazine so it could get a little pricey. My guess would be about $55/year.
  • New York Spaces– This magazine is more focused on residential design in New York but has features of really unique interiors and products. I was able to snag this one for free since, as students, we are “involved with the industry”!
Interior Design Magazine

Interior Design Magazine

  • Interior Design – One of the top (as well as most innovative, in my opinion) interior design magazines. It covers both commercial and residential design, but definitely focuses more on the commercial side. $59.95/year, but often available through your school for a student discount of $19.95/year.
  • Architectural Digest – Another one of the top design magazines, slightly more traditional in nature. It also covers both commercial and residential design, with a slight lean towards the residential side. $21/year.

Retail/Hospitality Design Magazines:

  • Hospitality Design– This is the premier trade magazine for the field of hospitality design. It covers the design of hotels, resorts,restaurants, cruise ships, country clubs, night clubs, conference centers, spas, senior living facilities, etc. This mag is $83/year but FREE to those in the field! I have not been able to find out if this applies to students, but applying for the free subscription is definitely worth a shot.
VMSD Cover

VMSD Cover

  • Visual Merchandising and Store Design (VMSD) – This magazine shows the latest in store design as well as presents merchandising strategies and new products. It is a smaller magazine but packed with information, so I highly recommend it if you are interested in retail desin! VMSD was another one that I was able to snag for free as a student!
  • Display and Design Ideas (DDI) – DDI’s purpose is to help retailers maximize sales through effective store design and visual presentation. Even though I’m not technically going into retailing I still think this magazine would be very beneficial if I go into retail design. Knowing something about how to maximize sales through design would definitely be seen as a big plus by employers and clients. A FREE subscription to those “involved with retail design”.

Unique Interior Design Magazines:

  • PIN-UP – As a “magazine for architectural entertainment”, PIN-UP gives a true artistic and indie edge to the interior design and architectural world. It features interviews, artwork, and articles by designers, architects, and artists from all over the globe. A year subscription (2 issues) is available from the PIN-UP website for $34, or you can buy individual issues for $10 from americanapparel.net


  • Apartamento– Described as “an everyday life interiors magazine”, Apartamento brings fourth an innovative view on home interiors. It seems like the people behind this magazine believe that design of the home is a true reflection of the user and almost something that happens naturally. Available for 25 Euro from the Apartamento website, or $15.00 from americanapparel.net (I know which choice I would make!).

Eco-Friendly & Sustainable Design Magazines:

  • Eco-Structure – A more architecturally-based magazine, but, free subscription for those “in the industry!”
  • Green Source – This is a collaborative magazine that explores and teaches about the planning and deign of sustainable buildings. $19.95/year.

I hope that this can be a good starting point for finding interior design magazines more focused on your interests. I encourage comments if you know of any other awesome magazines that are out there!

I would also like to take a quick moment to make a special announcement regarding IIDA!

Michigan State Interior Design Students

Michigan State Interior Design Students

First of all, my name is Lisa Backus and I am in my junior year of the interior design program at Michigan State University. I author a blog called Juxtaposition Design, and I am also currently the Publicity Chair for the Michigan State University Student Chapter of ASID. MSU has continually had an ASID chapter but, as of last week, we are officially starting the transition to a general interior design organization that will now also have an IIDA Campus Center! We still have a lot of steps to take to establish this all correctly, but I am very excited to soon welcome IIDA to Michigan State University!

Student Sample Swap

Today we have an announcement from Cheyne Brown about a Student Sample Swap taking place in L.A.

On Saturday, April 19th, the IIDA Los Angeles City Center will hold its second annual Student Sample Swap. Manufacturers and design firms across Los Angeles are gathering their extra materials samples for the event. These materials will be sorted “swap meet style” and distributed throughout the HOK office. The day of the events, students are invited to grab the best materials they can find for their studio projects, ranging from carpet and textiles to wood and glass. Materials experts will be on hand to answer questions and offer guidance if needed. Tours of the HOK office will also be available for anyone interested.

New for this year, students are also invited to attend several speciatly workshops.

  • A Portfolio Review is available, giving students a chance to get feedback from some of LA’s top design professionals.
  • An Interview Skills Workshop will be a fun opportunity to pick up some tips and tricks.
  • A Green Crash Course will offer a quick overview of sustainable design.

The event will be hosted by HOK and sponsored by Herman Miller and Workplace Resource.

Turn it off!


Nelly Furtado, Fall Out Boy, the Chicago Cubs, the Phoenix Suns, and the Blue Man Group are all doing it. No, they aren’t trying to sell you tickets to their concerts, games or performances, they have joined with Earth Hour (sponsored by the World Wildlife Federation) to commit to turning their lights off on Saturday, March 29th at 8 p.m.

The idea came from Sydney’s successful call to ask their citizens to turn off their lights for one hour. The results were outstanding! 2.2 million people participated and 2,100 businesses, which resulted in a 10.2% energy consumption decrease (www.earthhourus.org). According to Earth Hour’s website, the energy consumption decrease would be equivalent to taking 48,000 cars off the road for a year, if the decrease was sustained.


This year, main partner cities include Chicago, Denver, San Francisco, Phoenix and Atlanta and more! Visit Earth Hour’s website to see if your city is participating and at what time. If you don’t find it, you have the option to sign up your city. Again it starts at 8 p.m.

What will you do with your hour? Play a board game, read by candlelight, take a walk with a friend? Send your photos and/or stories to me, and I will post them on the blog so we can share our “green” experiences!