Students design their future

Gunel Mammadzada, Writer

Houston Community College welcomed interior design students in the 2015 orientation held on Wednesday at the Central Learning Hub-Science Building. More than 5 professional organizations told the students how to,“Design your future”.

Students at the orientation met with the coordinator of interior design program and the professors who teach the program.

The interior design program at Houston Community College is celebrating its 34th year. Shasta Swift, the interior design coordinator, said that,“I am proud that Houston Community College is offering the oldest design program in Houston. We provide competitive well-rounded education with the necessary skills to directly enter the interior design field.”

The coordinator of the program provided helpful information for the students who want to pursue an interior design associate degree. Interior design students are provided with drafting studios, computer lab, resource room and a library with private book collection. The interior design department offers four Interior design degree plans: Associates in Applied Science interior design degree, a one year kitchen and bath certificate, a one year interior design decorator and a digital communication graphic design AAS.

The interior design program at Houston Community College is accredited by National Kitchen & Bath Association and is endorsed by certified interior decorators. Swift added that right now they are in the process of getting accreditation by the U.S. Department of Education school design.

The interior design department is among of the few to hold many accreditations of from different industry related programs. Interior design programs offers a variety of software programs such as Revit, AutoCAD, InDesign and Photoshop.

For students who want to get a bachelor degree, interior design department has articulation agreements with university of Stephen F. Austin, The Art Institute of Houston, and Sam Houston State University. Houston Community College also organizes study tours.

There are two great resource facilities for interior designers: Houston decorative center and Houston design center. Kevin Hamby, RID interior design professor mentioned that students have a great opportunity to join iDesign. iDesign it is Houston community college student interior design organization. iDesign is bringing all the necessary information to students when it comes to scholarships, competitions, workshops, networking with people and student career day events.

Jeniffer D. Trenta the conference chair of the International Interior design organization) encouraged students to join the organization. IIDA gives $12,000 in annual scholarships. Every year, they organize different project tours, design competitions, portfolio reviews, and sponsor workshops. IIDA teaches new interior design students sales presentation technique to network so people recognize and remember you. IIDA is part of Industry Expo practicing in the field where students have the opportunity to meet manufactures, architects, and designers. IIDA organizes many events, showrooms, projections, continuing education and famous product runway show.

Kitchen and Bath Association NKBA has been leading the kitchen and bath industry for 45 years. Melissa Sharp a former Houston Community College student mentioned that NKBA association offers experience by providing internships with industry firms. NKBA gives away $50,000 in scholarships, as well as a trip to Las Vegas for students. The NKBA offers leadership positions to students. Students can earn an NKBA professional certification right out of college.

NEWH organization is the hospitality industry network. By joining NEWH, students have the opportunity to get lectures, seminars, educational programs, and educational tours. NEWH organization every year raise $12,000 for scholarships.

Rhonnika Clifton member of American Society of Interior Designers committee said that ASID is one of the oldest organizations. With 300 student chapters and 48 professional chapters ASID provides students with a community wherever they go. ASID is not just centered in residential but also in commercial interior design. ASID also provides money for scholarship. ASID has a lot of design awards annually. ASID helps students with networking, communication and education.

At the end of the presentations by the different organizations, many of the students were signing up to join the organizations that sponsored the event. The logo of the event “Design your future” was clearly reflected in the entire orientation.