K+BB - December 2008 - (Page 66)

Practice Reality Check ASID’s mentorship program offers real-world experience This fall, the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) introduced RealWorld DesignWeek (RWDW), a national mentorship program that pairs design professionals with students from across the country for a day of hands-on experience. Participating students were offered a choice of a variety of experiences, including shadowing a residential designer and remodeler. How did the week go? K+BB caught up with designer Kelly Schellert and student Angie Kirkland to find out. Kelly Schellert, ASID Sedoria Residential Design and Remodeling As a business owner and primary designer of my own firm, as well as president of the Missouri East Chapter of ASID, I find that life often consists of making sound decisions at the speed of light. But I also recognize that the opportunities resulting from these moments far exceed any expectations about the outcome. Such was the case with ASID’s inaugural launch of RWDW. As a huge student advocate, I was excited when the celebrity spokesperson, Matt Lorenz, ALLIED MEMBER ASID, presented the program at the ASID Chapter Leadership Conference in July of 2007. Then, at the 2008 ASID annual conference in New Orleans, when I saw the RWDW registration table, I immediately signed up to mentor a student each day for all five days! Back at home, reality set in. My first thought was, “Oh, should I have signed up for a whole week?” However, I knew that the potential impact I could have on students would be worth the time invested. In the end, I was paired up with a second-career student interested in kitchen and bath design, my specialty. The ASID Missouri East Chapter is working to expand our student membership and we routinely visit schools to speak about the benefits of belonging to ASID. After presenting to students at my alma mater before RWDW, Angie Kirkland approached me and introduced herself as my RWDW student. Excitedly, she expressed a desire to learn more about the business aspects of interior design and asked if she could bring her boards for me to critique, which I assured her would not be a problem. I cleared my schedule of all but one appointment to give her the best learning opportunity. She quietly observed our interaction with the client. We spent the remainder of the day talking about experience, how to handle real-world situations, looking over her boards and discussing how to bridge the gap of expectations with reality. The overall experience was a delightful one, exceeding my expectations once again. After all, you get out of any organization what you put into it. Most days find me moving at a pace that doesn’t allow for living in the moment. Looking back on that day, I’ve realized that slowing down once in a while to share your knowledge and experiences with others is invaluable. Encouraging others to live their dream is inspiring and reminds us the journey is worth it. Angie Kirkland, STUDENT MEMBER ASID St. Louis Community College at Meramec ASID’s student mentoring program was exactly as titled—a Real World experience in a Real World setting, where I got Real World advice about Real World situations. My experience started last June during NeoCon’s student day when Matt Lorenz told me how non-traditional students like myself should approach finding a job and suggested attending RWDW. I registered for RWDW through ASID’s website on the first day possible and got my first choice, Kelly Schellert, a chapter president of ASID and a graduate of the school I am attending. When the day came, it started with a detailed tour of Kelly’s gorgeous showroom and studio space. I was able to closely examine the firm’s cabinetry displays, learn about its construction and the available options. Kelly then answered my long list of questions and I learned more about day-to-day practices like bidding and billing. She guided me through the process of handling awkward situations like discreetly steering clients away from poor design choices and dealing with a client who wants to see your design choices before hiring you—two real-world situations that I have already encountered. Next, I attended a client meeting where I observed the small things Kelly did, like following a customer’s cue by sitting on the floor, heels and all, to examine his cabinets. We also worked together on space planning for another client, a great hands-on experience that I really enjoyed. At the end of the day, Kelly was gracious enough to look over my boards from the two professional jobs I’ve completed and review some of my school assignments. Her suggestions were amazing and I can’t wait to put them into action. My suggestion to you—get involved in RealWorld DesignWeek next year. I couldn’t have asked for a better day, a better professional to shadow or a better learning experience. For more information on RWDW, visit ASID’s website at www.asid.org. s 66 + K BB December 2008 / www.kbbonline.com / The Official Sponsor of K/BIS www.kbis.com http://www.asid.org http://www.kbbonline.com http://www.kbis.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of K+BB - December 2008

K+BB - December 2008
Contents
Online Contents
Online News
Editorial
Dates
Focus
Trends
Product Innovator Awards
Products
Options
Profile
Abroad
Design
Linear Thinking
Miami Heat
Green
Access
Additions
Practice
Editorial Index
Ad Index
Favorites

K+BB - December 2008

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