ASID Design Your Path Presentation


Yesterday, representatives from the American Society of Interior Designers stopped by the college to give a presentation on how ASID can help students during their education and into their careers.

ASID often holds events that are prime opportunity for students to meet designers in the industry and network with future employers. Another great way to get internships is to enter in ASID’s Student Portfolio Competition. The competition, which is held in the fall, offers the opportunity to gain an interview with top firms, like Gensler,  to the finalists and grand prize winners.

Outside of chapter events, there are also numerous peer-groups through out of Illinois who meet and hold their own events. These events often include visits to show homes and material showrooms. Some peer groups even offer local mentoring opportunities.

ASID also offers many scholarships to students. These scholarships offer up to $5000 to students, and many don’t even require the submission of a project or portfolio. For more information on the available scholarships, click here.


When you have graduated, ASID can help you even more. Your student membership can then become an Allied Membership, which offers you a discounted membership for 5 years. The Illinois Chapter of ASID also has a job posting board specific to the state of Illinois, open to all members.

ASID also presents at NeoCon every year. NeoCon is a three-day convention that centers around the commercial sector of the industry, and is great opportunity for students. Every year, the convention does have Student Day, which features events like Career Exchange and Student Roadmap. These events offer opportunities like meetings and interviews with firms in the Chicago area and portfolio critiques. You can click here for more info on student programming at NeoCon.

The benefits of a student membership in ASID are even more than they presented in the meeting! And the best part is that it is truly affordable for students. Student members only pay $85, once, for their entire student career, up to six years. You can apply for student membership on their website, specifically here.

Do you have a cool competition, job opportunity, or other design related news? Let us know! Email us and we’ll get it up on the blog!


IIDA RED Awards and ASID Excelence Awards Close Soon!

The IIDA RED Awards close to submissions soon and ASID Design Excelence Awards are opening to submissions soon. School may be out this week, but that makes it the perfect time to brush up your projects and submit them. The best part? You can use the same project for both competitions! Make the best of the time and perfect one project and submit it to both competitions to increase your chances! Remember, entering competitions is a great way to get your name and work out there!

The Red Awards close March 31st, the end of this week. Click the image below to go to the entry page.

2018 IIDA RED Logo Square

The Design Excellence Awards open April 9th, in two weeks. Click the image below to go to the entry page.

DE awards

Job Opportunities at OPTO International



OPTO International (Whom the Contract Studio class visited recently, read more about that trip here!) is looking to hire a Design Intern as well as a Design Assistant. OPTO is a fast-growing company and these would be excellent opportunities for anyone interested in retail or contract design.

For the Design Intern position, they are looking for someone who can:

  • Work effectively in a team environment and be a strong supporting member
    of team efforts
  • Exude positive attitude and enthusiasm for success and influence other with this
  • Demonstrate willingness to continually learn about the Retail Industry to better
    understand and grow OPTO in that market place
  • Prioritize and work independently with minimal supervision
  • Communicate quickly, clearly, and effectively
  • Multi-task and still maintain a sharp eye for detail
  • Demonstrate effective stress management & time management skills
  • Outstanding communication skills both verbal and written
  • Demonstrate strong organization skills
  • Effectively use AutoCAD, Adobe Creative Suite, and other applications

As the Intern, you would be responsible for:

  • Design Support
  • Prepare client drawings for client proposals
  • Prepare client drawings for client orders
  • Revise quotes
  • Enthusiastically communicate with design team
  • Collecting and mailing catalogs and finish samples to client
  • Support the replenishment of the materials library

The Design Assistant is a much more in-depth role and is perfect for someone who can do all of the above and is in possession of an Associates degree in art or design related fields. This is a perfect opportunity if you are set to graduate at the end of this semester!

The Design Assistant would be responsible for:

  • Concierge Services
  • Capture all prospect and lead data (Salescall inquiries and Web inquiries)
  • Proactively research and qualify incoming leads and assess opportunity potential
  • Establish a client profile for new opportunities with qualified information and
  • Educate prospects and leads on OPTO’s products and services
  • Traffic opportunities to Design team based on established criteria
  • Follow-up on prospects and leads with client specific material to help the
    design/sales process
  • Properly document communication between prospects and OPTO for ease
    of transition from concierge to Design team
  • Enthusiastically communicate with both prospects and colleagues
  • Understand the project requirements and properly communicate client
    interaction to Design team

If you are the person to fill either of these positions, please contact Shelly Mocchi for more information.

Do you have a cool competition, job opportunity, or other design related news? Let us know! Email us and we’ll get it up on the blog!

COD Student Yvonne Franchini on an award winning team at “Stitch”- an IIDA-Illinois Chapter Signature Event

kmr and i on stage

COD Student, Yvonne Franchini, and her friend, Katelyn (the model), on stage at the IIDA-Illinois Chapter’s signature event “Stitch”, held in March at the House of Blues.

We always encourage students to participate in events sponsored by our local professional design organizations. Let’s let Yvonne tell you herself why you need to take advantage of all of the opportunities you can:

“Stitch 2018 was without a doubt my favorite experience as a COD Interior Design student. Through the event I was able to not only network with a great group of Chicago architects, designers and manufacturers, but I was also given the opportunity to collaborate freely and creatively with them, as well as learn more about their companies and their contributions to the industry. I could not have asked for a better group of people to work with than those at Heitman Architects and Trendway. They gave me the creative freedom to take on a large portion of the project, and as a student that was a very satisfying feeling.”

KMR wins people's choice award!

Their entry won the “Andy Warhol People’s Choice Award”

“In addition, they took us to the Trendway factory in Michigan, where I learned a lot about the furniture-making process and their popular “Feek” material, which we used in our design. Heitman Architects uses some of the most innovative computer design technology to create in their work place and allowed us to experiment with all of it in order to better visualize our ideas. I could not be more grateful to these two companies for trusting me to take on so much of the project, and for giving me all of the knowledge and the tools necessary to do so. This project required a lot of organized meetings, group work, and creative problem solving, which helped me to better understand what it takes to work in this industry. By the end of this project, I had fully designed a beautiful corset out of Trendway chair backs.” 


“I was also placed in charge of hair and makeup the day of the event, and doing it was even more enjoyable because the model we used was my very best friend.”

makeup application

“My dad even helped out and the team was so thankful to him for lending his carpentry skills to our cause.  The rest of my teammates created a beautiful cape made of Trendway textiles, a skirt made of “Feek” and 3-D printed jewelry that displayed the Trendway logo and our art theme.”

led corset cage

“In the end, everything came together so well and all of our hard work paid off when we won the “Andy Warhol People’s Choice Award.” This experience, and all of the great people I worked with on this project will be unforgettable for me. Thanks to IIDA Illinois and College of Dupage for granting me such a wonderful opportunity!”

back of our shirts

Residential Studio Field Trip to Arlington Design Center

Recently, the residential studio class took a field trip to the Arlington Design Center to tour the Design D’Vision, CAI Interiors, CAI Lighting and the Kravet, Lee Jofa, Brunswig & Fils showrooms. Students got to see what is up and coming in the high-end residential market.


Residential Studio is a capstone-level class that focuses on the design of residential spaces. In it, students produce professional portfolio quality level projects. If you would like more information on the class, please contact Shelly Mocchi, who teaches this course.

Have a cool competition, job opportunity, or other design related news? Let us know! Email us and we’ll get it up on the blog!

Contact Studio Field Trip to OPTO International

The Contract Studio class took a field trip to OPTO International last week! OPTO International makes fixtures and displays for the retail industry. Students learned about how the company makes their products and how they can incorporate them into their designs.

Contract Studio is a capstone-level class, that focuses on the retail, restaurant, and hospitality sectors. Students enrolled in the class produce professional portfolio quality projects. If you would like more details on the class, please contact Shelly Mocchi, who teaches the course.

Have a cool competition, job opening, or other design related news? Let us know! Email us and we’ll get it up on the blog!

Job Opportunity at Drapery Connection

Drapery Connection is looking for Students to help them schedule client appointments. They are looking for:

  • Someone who has “presence” and can quickly build not only rapport, but also confidence & trust with customers.
  • Your track record, talent & experience defines & matches what we need.
  • You have at least 4 years prior office or sales experience in a high volume, fast paced, customer focused environment.
  • You must be a self-starter, accept touch coaching, and be held accountable to agreed upon goals.
  • You excel making calls or interacting with clients over 50+ times a day, selling value and not price, and managing your time effectively.
  • You have an uncanny attention to detail that impresses your friends and family
  • You have “Presentation” skills from prior networking events, speaking engagements, or theatrical “on-stage” background, and welcome the chance to be “face to face” with clients.
  • Advanced skills in communication and technology (Microsoft tools and CRM) to enhance the customer experience.


The role entails:

  • Administrative prep for designers in putting together sales materials prior to client appointments.
  • Generating leads and scheduling clients in person and/or over the phone through marketing events, showroom consultations, call campaigns, social media, and other platforms to engage client interest.
  • 50% in the office (scheduling, design prep, marketing follow up), 50% in the field (events, showrooms, networking opportunities)
  • Ability to give clients the “concierge” treatment further developing long-term relationships and repeat/referral clients.

If you’re you think you’re the person for the job, email them at

Do you have a cool job opportunity, event, or other design related news? Let us know! We’ll get it up on the blog!

IIDA Illinois Chapter CEU: Designing for High Impact Learning Spaces


Education is being disrupted by shifting student demographics, research focused on the science of learning, and the impact of new technologies. Schools are looking at their roles through a new lens. Leaders are rethinking the environments of the past, which were intended for controlling students, restricting learning to a predetermined curriculum, delivered by those in authority. They now have a vision of education that is freeing, unfolding, and discovering who we are and our purpose as we live and work together.

New teaching approaches demand new kinds of learning spaces to prepare today’s students for the future. As content becomes more dynamic, flexible and accessible to a large number of students, schools and universities are looking at how that content is currently delivered and what types of changes need to be made in learning spaces.

We invite you to join us for a highly interactive and fun evening as we share insight into these evolving learning spaces. Our CEU was developed in partnership with Nancy Sturm, the Principal Consultant at the Sextant Group. Nancy is a nationally-recognized thought leader in creating transformative learning environments. Nancy is located in Washington, D.C. and is a former Science Teacher of the Year, as well as past Executive Director of NASA’s Challenger Learning Center.

Virtual Reality equipment provided.

.1 CEU Credit – 1 Hour

Tickets are free to members

Have a cool event, job opportunity, or design related news? Let us know! Email us and we’ll get it up on the blog!

Internship at BOS

Business Office Solutions is looking to hire an intern! This is an excellent opportunity, especially if you are looking to enter the commercial and office design fields. They are looking for someone to:

  • utilize the library of samples of materials, including reorganizing samples, removing outdated materials, ordering new samples etc.
  • interact with company representatives to learn about new materials, quantities, characteristics and care; attending open houses etc.
  • put together presentation boards – both tangible and digital
  • shadow account managers on sales calls and presentations
  • sketching and rendering
  • use autoCAD
  • develop floor plans
  • 3D modeling

If this sounds like you, contact Carla Schroeder at BOS directly. If you want more information about the company or internship, you can contact Pam McClelland, who teaches multiple classes at COD and has worked at BOS in the past!

Have a cool intership, event, or other piece of design related news? Let us know! Email us and we’ll put it up on the blog!