A student-centric program is introducing emerging and in-training designers to Kravet and the company’s brands, including Lee Jofa, Brunschwig & Fils, and GP & J Baker. The Kravet Design Grad Program, launched in 2012, allows students to use the company’s online search and memo-ordering service, with the option of ordering memos through a Student Designer account on e-designtrade.com. Student account holders are able to search product offerings and order up to 10 memo samples within a 30-day period.
“We are very proud of our Design Grad program. It allows us to directly communicate with the future professionals of our industry throughout their educational process,” shares Ellen Kravet, executive vice president and co-owner of Kravet. “Design institutions across the U.S. and Canada have been extremely receptive to our innovative program as we continuously strive to expand our offerings.”
Karen Lerman, special projects coordinator at Kravet, developed the program and chatted with EAL about its details.
Where did the idea to create this program originate?
Kravet has always been interested in students and their design careers. We decided to put together an official initiative that would include all design schools and universities with design majors across the country and come up with ways students could bridge their design education with the real design world.
Did students reach out to Kravet?
Once I reached out to the professors and design chairs at the schools and universities and began posting things on the Design Grad website, we started to hear from students. They requested materials and began to attend our events. In addition, our showroom managers often host professors and their classes to introduce them to our collections and educate them on how to shop a showroom.
What has the response been like so far?
The response has been fantastic! We have had students attend our Chair Build events, come to our showrooms for a meet-and-greet with such notable designers as Diane von Furstenberg, Thom Filicia, Jonathan Adler, Candice Olson and the renowned artist Hunt Slonem. We have hosted five Kravet Lunch and Learn programs at different schools. In addition, we have currently spearheaded three different design competitions in three different states, and others are in the works.
Are you working with particular schools?
I work with design schools and university design departments all across the country. Some are more actively involved, but I reach out to them area by area in a given time period.
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