Happenings: LAUNCH

The ASID National Student Summit

04.01.2016 by Christopher Curtland

Nearly 250 students recently joined ASID for a sold out weekend of thought leadership, collaboration, and professional development. “It unleashed the power of design and we couldn’t be more thrilled with the results,” said ASID CEO Randy Fiser. “The students learned about the career paths available with an interior design degree, and gained valuable insights on resumes, portfolios, networking, and transitioning from student design to practice.”

The overall goal of the event was to stir and stimulate the students, and Saturday’s keynote speaker Primo Orpilla, principal and co-founder of Studio O+A, did that by telling students to engage with whatever inspires them. “There’s no reason why your workspace can’t look like your favorite bar as long as it has the functionality you need,” he said. “See art, go to a junkyard, or take a walk.”

The other way to accomplish this? “Get involved,” suggested Friday’s keynote speaker Brooke Traeger-Tumsaroch, design director at AvroKO. “However you can—doing community outreach, reaching out to schools or past professors, and being open to whatever comes your way. Be open, and amazing things will happen.”

A select few students were involved in the Student Portfolio Competition. Judges made selections based on concept, content, and context, and generated a group of finalists who epitomized the spirit of the competition in originality, ingenuity, and creativity. Zijian Wang and Zhaoqi Su of Indiana University were awarded internships from Gensler and HKS Architects respectively, while Rebecca Thompson of Florida State University and Yiyun Luo of Drexel University received honorable mentions. The Grand Prize winner was Leigh Ann Soistmann of Virginia Tech.

“All of the finalists had some really great work,” Soistmann said. “I’m excited to get started and work on a real project and see it through from the start to the actual space. I’m very inspired by something that will be affecting the human experience.”