ATLANTA - Students from colleges and universities throughout the U.S. gathered Tuesday at the Georgia World Congress Center for the awards ceremony of the Design Emphasis Student Furniture Design Competition.

The competition offers design students an opportunity to demonstrate their talent and originality before a panel of judges including furniture industry designers, manufacturing professionals and retail executives.

Rick Hannigan, director of marketing and communication at Wenig/HOLZ-HER and chairman of the IWF Management Committee, welcomed the competitors at the opening of the ceremony.

"Furniture manufacturers are diligent in their pursuit of product designs that will resonate with today's consumer, and your work offers a key to the future in connecting with younger consumers," Hannigan said.

"You are the future of our industry. It is always important that we bring new ideas and innovation to furniture design. And our industry is relying on you to carry us into the future," he added.

provides a unique chance to experience an international industry trade show, make important career contacts and exchange ideas with other students from around the nation.

The competition awarded the designs in five categories: Seating, Case Goods, Commercial/Office/Hospitality Furniture, Accent Furniture/Accent Tables, and Design Creativity. A prize is also given for the Best of Show.

Accent Furniture/Accent Tables

Honorable Mention: Puzzle Table by John Barry from Southside Virginia Community College
Merit: Flow of Lines by Luis Peraza from Columbus College of Art and Design
Accent Furniture/Accent Tables Award Winner: Intersection Table by Mark Manczyk from the University of Kentucky

Case Goods

Honorable Mention: Mass Table by Adam Eaton from the University of Kentucky
Merit: Credenza/Sideboard by Ian Anderson from Brigham Young University
Case Goods Award Winner: Wave Credenza by Benjamin Rosenberg from Haywood Community College

Commercial/Office/Hospitality

Honorable Mention: Bench by Kenton Beard from Southern Virginia Higher Education Center
Merit: Tiki Lounge Chairs by Richard Thompson from Kansas State University
Commercial/Office/Hospitality Award Winner: U Lounge Chair by You Min Kim from Art Center College of Design 

Design Creativity

Honorable Mention: Plume Wall Piece by Adriana McNinch from Purdue University
Merit: Ametamorphosis Tableby Brennan Gasser from Minneapolis College of Art and Design
Design Creativity Award Winner: Home is Where the Heart Is Bench by Valerie Berlage from Haywood Community College

Seating 

Honorable Mention: Typographic Chair by Nicholas Wolfatthe Univeristy of Idaho
Merit: Danish Modern Chair by Patrick White from Appalachian Center for Craft
Seating Award Winner: Folded Plane Chair by Sarah Mohr from the University of Kentucky

Best of Show

Wave Credenza by Benjamin Rosenberg from Haywood Community College

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