Exciting transformations have taken place at the College of Design, as several spaces have been renovated to enhance the student experience. The college recently completed renovations in Rapson Hall Rooms 1 and 253; McNeal Hall Suite 32, 12, and 18; and 1425 University Ave. Rooms 75 and 175. All of the renovations have resulted in refreshed and reimagined areas that cater to the needs of students from across design programs.
The College of Design is pleased to announce that 12 of its individuals and teams received funding from the University’s 2023 Imagine Fund. These grants support innovative research in the arts, humanities, and design fields. Design faculty and researchers will use the funds for historical investigation and analysis, community-based design, and experimental technology applications.
Every year faculty, instructors, researchers, and students from across the College of Design present their research during the annual Research and Creative Scholarship Showcase. You can learn more about the 2023 presenters and their work in this year’s round-up.
On Thursday, June 1, Executive Vice President and Provost Rachel T.A. Croson announced the appointment of Dr. Prasad Boradkar as the next Dean of the College of Design, effective September 5, 2023.
Each spring, College of Design students from across our programs showcase their work through final reviews, presentations, and exhibitions. Join us in celebrating the end of the academic year by attending one of our final events!
- Intercollegiate collaboration provides life-saving UV protective hats for children with rare cancer syndrome
For many people, appearance or comfort is the most important consideration when choosing a hat to wear. But for people living with Xeroderma Pigmentosum (XP), an inherited disease that causes an individual to be extremely sensitive to ultraviolet radiation, health and safety must take precedence. As part of her ongoing efforts to raise awareness and support for individuals with XP, Dr. Laura Niedernhofer (College of Biological Sciences) partnered with Professor Lucy Dunne’s (Apparel Design) technical design studio to help design a better hat option for people living with XP.
In the fight against cancer, even the smallest things can make a world of difference. Cancer Care Foundation MN and Professor Lucy Dunne’s technical design studio class collaborated to create a comfortable garment for infants undergoing cancer treatment at Children’s Minnesota. The outcome? A onesie with pre-designed pockets for easy access to treatment ports.
Sara Lopez (BS ’12, Apparel Design) wants you to stop and think about your clothing. Profiled in outlets like Vogue, Elle, and W Magazine, Lopez's work considers clothing's purpose in society and what its modern use says about our world. Her label, A--Company, deconstructs one piece of clothing at a time through the lens of critical theory and queer studies to create something entirely new. In this interview, Lopez talks about the experiences that shaped her work, her design approach, and shares advice for current design students.
A desire to think critically and creatively put Professor Emerita Marilyn DeLong on the path to a career in higher education. Serving as associate dean before, during, and after the creation of the College of Design, DeLong helped shape the college’s graduate education programs. Her skill for seeing connections and her passion for helping women earn their Ph.D. degrees have made her a highly regarded and celebrated educator and mentor. In this interview, DeLong talks about her career, her future plans, and her advice for design academics and professionals.
In the spring of 2018 Teaching Specialist Bill Moran (Graphic Design) asked his students to design fabric wraps for the concrete pillars lining the basement of McNeal Hall. The project was a success, and it prompted Moran to ask himself, “Why not try this in the McNeal Hall Atrium?” The idea stuck with him and finally came to fruition in June 2022 when Moran solicited help from alumni, students, staff of the Goldstein Museum of Design, and received funding from the college’s Kusske Design Initiative to make his idea a reality.
From tackling the user experience design of the Metaverse to developing customized pediatric respiratory masks, our faculty are conducting research across the design fields and beyond. This spring, 12 faculty members received grants from the University’s Imagine Fund, which supports innovative research in the arts, humanities, and design fields.
Help celebrate our students’ hard work by joining the College of Design community for final reviews, exhibitions, and showcases featuring work from across our design disciplines.
The College of Design is pleased to announce the opening of the Eicher Dress and Fashion Library, which honors Regents Professor Emerita Joanne B. Eicher.
When the COVID-19 pandemic set in and drove more social interaction online, virtual reality (VR) platforms, like VRchat or SecondLife, exploded in popularity. These virtual environments allow users to make friends, play games, and participate in a virtual economy. For Claire Lumen (BS ‘20, Apparel Design), this technology provides more than just a social outlet. As a student, VR shaped her academic focus and played a pivotal role in her journey as a trans woman. Now in her professional life, VR continues to shape how Lumen applies her apparel design skills to the virtual world.
Breathe99 started making face masks before it was popular. Founded in 2018, the company’s original mask, the B1 Mask, was designed to protect users from air pollution. When the COVID-19 pandemic began to spread in early 2020, the team, including alumna Julia Duvall, put their experience to good use and redesigned the B1 Mask to create a higher protection face covering. With that, the B2 Mask was born and soon became one of Time Magazine’s 100 Best Inventions of 2020.
Sarah Klecker (BS ’17, Apparel Design) is putting her design degree to work creating functional apparel for athletes of all kinds.
To become more sustainable, Winsome Goods founder Kathryn Sieve (B.S. ’11, Apparel Design) knew she had to find a way to incorporate the leftover fabric scraps from her products into usable items. After discussing the problem with instructor Lindsey Strange (Apparel Design) it became clear that it was the perfect research project for students to tackle in the Apparel Studio I.
Driven by the acute need for N95 masks in hospitals, faculty from the University of Minnesota’s College of Design, College of Science of Engineering, and medical school worked together to create two face mask designs that could be assembled using available materials.
The need for N95 masks has skyrocketed in recent weeks in response to COVID-19. To address this challenge, an interdisciplinary research team at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities has designed two respirator mask prototypes from donated filter material by Cummins and bendable components from Bedford Industries.
The fields of medical device and apparel design may not seem to have a lot in common, but alumni from the College of Design are changing that.
Pushing the boundaries of traditional fashion, this year’s senior apparel design fashion show, Amplified, speaks to a variety of lifestyles and cultures. From modest formalwear to colorful street style and theatrical costume play this year’s show explores fashion’s influences on social responsibility, gender fluidity, virtual reality, modern cultural expressions, and much more.
What started as a class project for Ian Harris, Warda Moosa, and Mary Xiong (all Apparel Design) turned into the prize-winning entry at the Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) Advanced Textiles Student Design Competition. Together the three seniors (then juniors) created an emergency avalanche transceiver garment that took first place in this national competition.
A breakthrough invention in wearable technology has the potential to change how we interact with the clothes we wear every day.
The current retail landscape is characterized by constant innovation, with new technologies connecting retailers and consumers in ways that were previously unimaginable. In this rapidly changing environment, small business owners are left vulnerable and under pressure to compete for consumer attention and patronage.