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Interior Design Students Cook Up Interdisciplinary Designs with GRCC

Posted October 30, 2012 in Student

Although Kendall design students often have little to do with recipes, recently senior Interior Design students in Assistant Professor Lee Davis’ class found themselves in the kitchen with students at the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education at Grand Rapids Community College.

The two schools recently partnered for an interdisciplinary project to develop Culinary Demonstration Kitchens that were paired with international genres of food and dining tradition.

Students in Dr. Kymberli Flanagan’s Purchasing course teamed with Professor Lee Davis’ Senior Studio-B students. Each team was given a theme and the teams developed several show kitchen designs to match the themes: Pacific Rim, Mediterranean, Italian, Spanish, Bakery, etc.

Woodways Custom Cabinetry team guided students toward some exciting variations in cabinet components and finishing options that allowed the designers to build highly customized work areas for the culinary teams.

Said Professor Davis, “It was a great privilege to be able to work with clients whose expertise is in a field other than interior design. This project allowed all of the students to learn something completely new and to appreciate the very specific needs and wants of both chef and audience. Our designers had the chance to explore the many ways that a built environment can be manipulated to meet very specific needs. And Dr. Flanagan’s culinary teams made this project fun and exciting for us. We look forward to more projects like this in the future that bring students together to explore the interaction of culinary arts and design.”

Dr. Flanagan adds, “I very much appreciated being able to give my students this experiential learning opportunity. Having had the opportunity to communicate in business terms about vision, mission and menu gave them an opportunity often only afforded to those opening their own business.”

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