Honors Roll In for ID Students and Alumni

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School of Industrial Design students and alumni this past spring have been the recipients of several honors, national and international., the online design magazine, recognized two projects from students and alumni.

Allison Miller and Hua Wen received Student Notable in the Open Design category for their 3D Printed Centrifuge for International Health Labs. Allison graduated in May with a Master’s in Industrial Design and Wen expects to graduate in December with a Master’s in Industrial Design.

The students were asked by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Division of Bacterial Diseases (DBD) to improve the design of a manual centrifuge, often used in international health labs where frequent power outages make using electric centrifuges difficult. The centrifuges are used to analyze bodily fluids, such as blood. The project was part of their Spring 2016 ID6201 class with Wendell Wilson, a Professor of Practice in the School.

The device pulls together a salad spinner and a 3D printed base. The project has been presented to the CDC and they are awaiting word on whether the CDC will implement their design.

Core 77 also recognized an alumni project, Spark Your Design Creativity book, which received a Notable in the Design Education Initiative category.

Spark is an “activity book by Atlanta design nonprofit Spark Corps. The book is a tool that introduces kids to design thinking while helping them to build fundamental social skills.”

Industrial Design alumni involved in the project were Grace Cha, Allison Miller, Ashley Touchton, and Yisha Zhou.

According to Miller, “The catalyst for the book came after we recognized that design could be used as a tool to teach vital social skills to kids. Design is all about building empathy with people, working as a team, and problem solving. We wanted to create the book as a way to add to this conversation. We think design has the ability to help empower kids to solve really big problems with a methodology designers use every day.”

As Miller and Wen await word from the CDC, they have learned they will have the opportunity to exhibit their centrifuge in the Global Grad Show. They were invited to participate in the show, which is part of Dubai Design Week held in November in Dubai.

The Global Grad Show website calls the event “an exhibition of student works from the world’s leading design schools.”

The exhibition highlights design that is idea driven, showing prototypes that can be developed. It provides a platform for people to think about design that is responding to needs or identifying needs, and then providing tools to explore those new territories, according to a video on the website featuring Brendan McGetrick, curator of the Global Grad Show.

“Since launching in 2015, the show has grown to become the world’s largest student gathering. For its third edition, the exhibition is set to involve 75 universities from 50 countries,” the website states.

One student and a professor are invited; Wen and Wilson expect to attend.

Spark also received a 2017 International Design Excellence Award (IDEA). The book was a Top Winner in the Student Designs category.

The Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) sponsors the award, which is judged by design experts from around the world. The contest this year drew entries from 54 countries.

IDSA announced the Top Winners and Bronze Winners on its website. Winners of the Gold and Silver awards will be announced at their conference at a ceremony Aug. 19 in a program open to the public at the Woodruff Arts Center in Atlanta, Ga.



  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created By: Malrey Head
  • Created: 07/20/2017
  • Modified By: Malrey Head
  • Modified: 07/25/2017


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