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Department of Interior Architecture & Product Design

Interior Architecture & Product Design


Message from the Department Head

HoweAs we grow into our new/old building I cannot help but be envious of our current and future students. The Seaton and Regnier Hall has always been their home away from home and now what a home it is! Finally, our building reflects the amazing ingenuity, careful thought, rigor and exquisite execution that has been the hallmark of our faculty and students. I look forward to witnessing how this facility, our faculty and students will further transform our department and college.

Continuing a path for the future I would like to share a forecast of my vision for IAPD. The major aspects that will become the foundation of this vision are fostering the department's growth, technology and partnership.

Growth - We have a strong department but as anyone in the design profession understands change is always necessary to stay current and relevant. As part of a transformation of the department I want to create a secondary track for our students with a degree in Product Design. The design emphasis of interior architecture, furniture and product design makes our degree unique. However, to continue to leverage the growing maker culture seen globally our product design program must adapt to this trend. This second degree will take some time to implement and I will keep you posted as we progress through the steps to make this a reality. This degree will not diminish our current degree in IAPD but let us further augment the IAPD curriculum regarding a design make culture. 

Technology – Finally, Virtual Reality (VR) has arrived! The siren of VR has been teasing us for decades but now the technology has caught up to the dream. The effect of walking through one’s design cannot be overstated. I see this as a necessary tool to not only more fully understand the effect of the design but as a way of investigating various options in real-time at full scale. Once again, I find myself envious of current and future students. The space and tools that will soon become ubiquitous and banal is astounding.

Partnership - If you have been keeping up on INsight you know of the success Professor Neal Hubbell’s Contract Furniture class has had in working with OFS Brand. Two of the projects designed by the student teams have become a part of the OFS line of furniture. With this success, we are now looking at alternatives for how this experience can grow and become a more integral part of our student curriculum.

These are just the initial projects of what I have envisioned for IAPD. There are other partnerships, growth and technologies I and the faculty are considering and I will let you know as they develop. This is an exciting time for our design degree and potential new degree. As we get to know our new building and all that it offers I am sure we will discover other alternatives to teaching, learning and serving the larger community with great design.


Nathan Howe
Interior Architecture & Product Design
Department Head
1087 Seaton Regnier Hall
Kansas State University