2024 Student Design Symposium  – NKBA


2024 Student Design Symposium 

The event hosted by the NKBA | KBIS Northern California Chapter, offered to students in the U.S. and Canada for the first time, provided opportunities to learn and network.

By Elisa Fernández-Arias

NKBA | KBIS’ 2024 Student Design Symposium, an annual event held for students virtually on March 8, featured a speaker, information on student member benefits and NKBA | KBIS certifications and badges, educational breakout sessions and networking. Hosted by the NKBA | KBIS Northern California Chapter, the symposium, usually offered only to local students, was offered to students across the U.S. and Canada for the first time.

The event was kicked off by Nureed Saeed, Owner and Creative Director, Nu Interiors, President of the Northern California Chapter and KBB 2023 Person of the Year, who gave a Chapter Statement of Intention, which included the chapter’s 2023 Year in Review.

Next, Jeanne Chung, Owner, Cozy Stylish Chic, and KBB 2022 Person of the Year, gave the keynote address. Her speech focused on the course of her interior design career and advice on how to succeed as a designer, including how to establish credibility and where to go to learn the industry. Educational breakout sessions followed on presenting a portfolio, charting a K&B career path and starting a design business and website.

After attendees returned to the main virtual room, NKBA | KBIS’ Learning Programs Manager, Kelly Ann Ryan, spoke about what it means to be a student member: free membership, opportunities for entering competitions, discounted educational resources and access to online webinars. She also talked through the Ellen Cheever Award, which is currently open for applications until May 3.

Networking breakout sessions followed Ryan’s speech. Once they were back in the main virtual room, NKBA | KBIS’ Sr. Mgr. Learning, Lindsay Franco, presented on NKBA | KBIS Learning Initiatives, such as the Specialty Badge Program and the CKBD certification. She also covered KBIS 2024 promotions, for educators, which included the purchase of any badge credential for only $99 to save $100, a special rate always available to students, and $200 off certification applications made by the end of March. Next, students attended additional breakout sessions on sintered stone, universal design, effective project management and communication with clients and developing a marketing plan.

Next, the 2024 SDS Committee members were shared with the group, including: Gioia Caesarman, Academic Relations, California Capital Chapter; Himangi Garg, Student, Cabot College; Patty Grewell, Design Assistant, Battelle Design; Membership Chair, Cañada College Interior Design Club; Bianca Harangus, Student & Interior Design Club President, West Valley College; Kelly Ann Ryan; Nureed Saeed; Rose Tanjaco, Intentionally Designed Interiors; and Sharon Washington, CKBD, SDS Chair, Eclexis Design & Northern California Chapter.

The Student Design Symposium was sponsored by Chapter Level sponsors All Natural Stone Granite & Fine Tile, BlueStar, DeWils Fine Cabinetry, Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery, French Cabinetry, Middleby Residential, MSI, True Residential, Riggs, Vadara and Sub-Zero Wolf & Cove. NKBA | KBIS was also a proud sponsor of this event. Additionally, free NKBA | KBIS student membership is made possible by the support of Sub-Zero Wolf & Cove, and the Student Design Competition is sponsored by Fisher & Paykel.

Looking ahead, the NKBA | KBIS Northern California Chapter will once again offer a national student design symposium supported by NKBA | KBIS, with even more student participation in this educational, interactive event. Students, educators and Chapter Officers will receive information about the next symposium prior to the start of the spring 2025 semester.