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A Day Out Of The Office

Design Intern Recaps Day Out Of The Office

By: Valeria Degutis

It is week ten of my internship and although I will have to go back to school soon, things are still going strong and I am being introduced to new projects everyday. I spent most of my Tuesday this week out and about in the North Shore sitting in on meetings for projects in varying stages.

Our first stop was in Evanston with Y.O.U. which stands for Youth & Opportunity United. Y.O.U.’s philosophy and mission is to provide positive youth development and services such as life skills,  leadership, and social skills to youth and their families in the community. D4D is working on FF&E (furniture, fixtures & equipment) for Y.O.U.’s new headquarters in collaboration with Studio Talo. D4D presented furniture as they are ready to take a look at how they can create collaborative spaces. It seemed like such an exciting stage in the design process for Y.O.U. After a few years of raising money and going through multiple different design options, they’re finally selecting furniture for their space. While all of this was going on there were still new things being brought up in the meeting such as slight programming changes and new concepts for touch-down work spaces. We were all able to successfully discuss our furniture recommendations and we came out of the meeting with a better understanding of how to proceed with the project as we go through the final phases of design.

After our meeting with Y.O.U., we went to Northfield for a kick off meeting with The Josselyn Center. The Josselyn Center is an affordable behavioral healthcare center that is in need of some updating.. Currently, the center is not ADA accessible and no work has been done in the building since the sixties. We sat in on this meeting with roomTEN Design who is collaborating on the renovation.This was a preliminary meeting where we discussed the details for the scope of work. Both D4D & roomTEN discussed their separate scopes of work, but also all of the work they will do together. D4D will take on the interior core of the building to create a more open and relaxing space for the reception and high traffic areas such as corridors and conference rooms. Talking with the clients and answering all of their questions was probably the most important part of this meeting. We were able to put them at ease and give them an idea of the type of impact we might have on their organization. Leaving that meeting gave me a sense of excitement and hope for The Josselyn Center and their future space.

On our way back we had a final stop to make at Apna Ghar for a quick meeting on finish selections. This project is just a bit further along than Y.O.U., but they were having trouble finding a floor finish that would accommodate their needs. We went to their offices armed with some more samples to assure them that they had many options. With little time for them to decide without delaying construction, we gave them the quick rundown of their options. The next day, I prepared a package with some information on the products to help Apna Ghar make a better informed decision.

The best part of our meeting filled day was working with the clients. Even though all of the projects were in different stages of the design process, there was so much excitement in all of the clients and I could tell that they were looking forward to the positive changes in their facilities to improve their organization. There was so much to learn all throughout the day and I was so lucky to be able to sit in on the meetings and interactions. I’m looking forward to my last few days here and the opportunities that will come with it.

I’ll get to finish up my summer with D4D  with painting days of service at RefugeeOne on August 12th and 13th, and you can join us too! Email Jordyn@designsfordignity.org for more information.

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