Groovystuff Renews Program With Auburn University: Dallas-based furniture and lighting manufacturer Groovystuff has renewed its partnership with the Industrial and Graphic Design department and the College of Architecture, Design & Construction at Auburn University for the second academic year in a row. Popularity for the Groovystuff: By Design Challenge has grown so much within the school’s Industrial Design department, that professor Tin-Man Lau has now included the challenge in two different classes to accommodate student interest.
The 22 students under the leadership of professor Lau are must design a furniture, lighting, or home décor product that emphasizes form, structure, and sustainable manufacturing practice using the reclaimed materials found in the Groovystuff brand. The design must be aesthetically pleasing, expressive, innovative, and considered for mass-production and inclusion in the licensed Dick Idol Legends Collection brand.
Originally from Hong Kong, professor Lau received a B.S. in Industrial Design from the National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) in Taiwan, a M.A. in Industrial Design from Ohio State University, and has been a faculty member at Auburn University teaching both undergraduate and graduate design courses since 1986. In 2007, he was named by Design Intelligence magazine as one of only four “Industrial Design Educators of the Year” and in both 2008 and 2009, the magazine ranked professor Lau as one of the “25 Most-Admired Educators of the Year.”
To properly introduce future graduates to the residential home furnishings market, the Groovystuff: By Design Challenge is set up as a two-stage process. First, students compete for the “Popular Vote at Market” and a cash prize by submitting a 20″ x 30″ product board, a ¼” scale model, and a 42″-high pedestal for display and presentation of their models to the retailers, designers, and trade professionals attending the Fall High Point Market, October 13-18. In stage two, Groovystuff puts these innovative designs into production and launches the finished goods six months later at the April 2013 High Point Market. Students will then be competing for the grand prize: “Most Written Orders at Market” and rewarded with an additional cash prize, inclusion in the licensed Dick Idol Legends Collection, permanent royalties for life, and a reason to join the residential home furnishing industry.
During the High Point Market, Groovystuff along with co-sponsor IMC properties, helps to broaden the educational outreach of university programs across the country by giving them real-world market experience and exposure in “The University Hall of Innovation & Job Creation” sponsored space at market that provides future graduates with networking opportunities and a platform to build on their association with the industry prior to graduation. In High Point, Groovystuff has a showroom at The Suites at Market Square, space G-1025.