During the last week of January, our IIDA Ohio Kentucky Chapter had the pleasure of sponsoring four student members to attend the IIDA SHIFT student conference in Dallas, TX, hosted by the Texas Oklahoma Chapter. SHIFT is a professional enrichment conference that brings together students, educators, and design professionals to guide students as they SHIFT from an academic career to a professional career. Two of our attendees reflected on their experience at the conference, Emily Andreasson from the University of Kentucky and Amber Bowman from Columbus College of Art and Design. Read their reflections below!
Emily Andreasson, Student IIDA - University of Kentucky:
Attending the IIDA SHIFT Conference was a genuinely life changing experience. In design it is very easy to become isolated into one’s own bubble of design, whether that be the design team you are working with, the sector of the industry you are in, or your college and studio group. The IIDA SHIFT Conference pushed me out of my design bubble and exposed me not only to new ideas and industry sectors, it also taught me more about topics that I am already interested in, such as WELL and Sustainable design. Some of my personal highlights from the workshop sessions were the professional etiquette workshop and the NCIDQ workshop. Both gave me so much insight an incredible advice on two topics that are generally quite daunting for design students.
The most exciting element of the SHIFT conference, however, was the opportunity it provided me to meet incredible peers and industry professionals, to share ideas, and to make connections that I hope will last for many years. The four other IIDA students that I traveled with to the conference were some of the most genuine, talented, and kind people I have had the pleasure to spend a week with and they are among the many connections that I will treasure for years to come.
As a student in design I cannot recommend highly enough the value that attending industry events and conferences bring to one’s education and career preparation. I am incredibly grateful to the IIDA OH/KY chapter for sponsoring me to attend the SHIFT Conference this year.
Amber Bowman, Student IIDA - Columbus College of Art and Design:
There is nothing more rewarding as a student than receiving the opportunity to meet and connect with working professionals in your desired career field. The SHIFT 2020 conference provided this experience for me as a graduating senior, which could not have come at a better time. The experience was not only educational but also memorable! Attending SHIFT allowed me the opportunity to meet industry professionals not just from Dallas, Texas but from all over the United States, some of which I learned have Ohio ties!
Through this experience, I toured several design firms and showrooms, visited a couple of projects local to Dallas, had several helpful portfolio reviews and participated in the most exhilarating 20 minute design charette of my life! I met, mingled and worked with fellow students from all over the country who became fast friends. I even managed to squeeze in some local sightseeing and activity with my fellow IIDA OH/KY Chapter members. Together, we explored several art and sculpture museums, gave Dallas’ local cuisine the ultimate taste test and even went ice skating. It was a fun filled, busy, three day adventure but one I will surely not forget!