CHICAGO—The International Interior Design Association’s (IIDA) 9th Annual Student Mentoring Week will take place February 21-25, 2011. Student Mentoring Week is an initiative created by IIDA to acknowledge the important role that students play in furthering the design industry. Student Members gain critical day-in-the-life Interior Design experience through participation in this yearly event.
At the same time, this is a convenient way for design professionals to share their experience and expertise with tomorrow’s designers. IIDA encourages design professionals to support the industry by hosting as many students as they feel comfortable with, or as few as two for all or part of the day.
IIDA has created an easy format for design professionals, including manufacturer’s representatives, practicing interior designers, educators, dealer salespeople, both currently working and not currently working, to spend the day with design students. Past mentors have commented on the inspiration they find working, talking and sharing with emerging professionals. The successful experience is two-fold: enhancing the careers and broadening the horizons of both the mentor and the mentee.
IIDA Student Members who apply will be matched up to network with a member of the interior design industry in their area of design practice. Students will experience first-hand the work done to create a safe, dependable and adaptable built environment. Student applicants are welcome to sign up with a friend, or IIDA can facilitate the pairing. Pairs will be assigned to designers in their city. All forms must be received by February 1, 2011. There is no cost to participate in IIDA Mentoring Week 2011.
In 2010, nearly 600 design students and industry professionals were paired, making it the most successful year yet. Students and professionals alike consistently praise the benefits of the program and how they were inspired in their careers and studies.
Another component of Student Mentoring Week stems from the IIDA Foundation and encourages all participating students to submit an essay about their mentoring experience. The winning essay receives 1,000 from the Lloy Hack Memorial Fund, which was established to honor the memory of Lloy Hack, an IIDA Member and highly regarded, award-winning interior designer from Boston. Last year’s scholarship award recipient, Jaclyn Moser, wrote of her experiences in a thoughtful essay. “My experience during IIDA Student Mentoring Week with Legat Architects was a reminder of the challenges of real world design and a phenomenal inspiration. It showed that as young professionals we can become part of an organization like theirs that strives to exceed client expectations, promotes sustainable practices, and demands innovation and integrity in design.”
Designers interested in participating in Mentoring Week as a mentor or a Student Member should contact Michelle Kraker, manager of student marketing and social media at (312) 379-5135 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit www.iida.org for more information.