Eastern Michigan University students place in top three spots for the third consecutive year at the National CET Student Awards

EMU student Jill Sitkiewicz's interior design rendering won first place at the National CET Awards.
The virtual environment created by Jillian Sitkiewicz, above, won first place in the National CET Awards' student rendering category.

YPSILANTI -- Interior design students from Eastern Michigan University were recently honored with the top three spots during the 14th annual National CET Student Awards, sponsored by the major Swedish software company, Configura. EMU has participated in the student rendering category of the National CET Student Awards for the past four years and this is the third consecutive year that all three top spots have been awarded to EMU interior design students. 

Interior design rendering by Kelsey Shields
Kelsey Shields placed second in the National CET Awards' student rendering category.

The National CET Awards challenge interior designers in the CET Designer software. While the competition is divided into five categories; rendering, student rendering, video, 360-panorama and innovative extension categories, EMU interior design students submit their work accordingly in the student rendering category. 

Jillian Sitkiewicz won first place, Kelsey Shields placed second and Olivia Grant took third.

“The EMU interior design program prepared me for this opportunity by allowing me to have creative freedom while providing requirements to teach me new skills,” said Shields. “The instructors here at EMU encourage their students to look at inspiration images, whether it is a former student's work or a famous interior designer; they motivate us to think outside the box.”

The CET software is a space-planning software that allows the user to drag and drop components into a virtual environment while collecting data that can calculate pricing and even prevent user error. Students train for this annual contest with Diane Guevara, assistant professor in visual and built environments at EMU, for eight months before submitting their work.

Olivia Grant's interior design rendering
Olivia Grant placed third in the National CET Awards competition with the above rendering.

Interior design students get the opportunity to enhance their presenting skills as well as experience their designs in a 360-degree view and further see it in a virtual reality viewer at the EMU Undergraduate Symposium. 

 “The benefit of designing 3-dimensionally, instead of only in 2D, is that the interior designer utilizes ‘live design,’ revising the project live with the client,” said Guevara. “The interior designer can then bring the design into a virtual reality (VR) headset, to assist with feeling immersed in the space. Our interior design students use this VR to critique their own designs.” 

“This opportunity helps provide professional experience and exposure within the interior design community,” said Guevara. “I am extremely proud to see that our students from EMU continue to exhibit their skills and represent our program in a nationally recognized program.” 

For more information about the CET Awards, visit www.configura.com/awards

About Eastern Michigan University

Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves more than 16,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering and Technology; Health and Human Services; and, its graduate school. EMU is regularly recognized by national publications for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website.

January 07, 2022

Written by:
Lexie Stypelkoski

Media Contact:
Melissa Thrasher