Bringing Designers Together

As part of our diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives, we launched our DEI Event Access program in 2020, which offers individuals who are underrepresented in industrial design—primarily BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color), female-identified and non-binary students—complimentary access to national Industrial Designers Society of America events.


In 2020, 50 individuals received complimentary registration to the International Design Conference, Women in Design Deep Dive, and Medical Design Deep Dive.


In 2021, 63 individuals received complimentary registration to the International Design Conference and Deep Dive events.


How it Works

Design Foundation partners with the Industrial Designers Society of America, which produces several large-scale, ticketed design events throughout the year. These events highlight the latest trends, practice methodologies, and impact of industrial design.

When an attendee purchases a ticket for an IDSA event, they have the option to also donate to the Design Foundation. These funds are combined with donations to the Design Foundation's General Fund to support the DEI Event Access program.

At the recommendation of IDSA's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council, Staff work with Design Foundation designees to select recipients from across the United States, each of whom are given complimentary registration to an upcoming IDSA event.


"The International Design Conference was an incredible opportunity that offered a second curriculum to my design education, much of which I was happy to share with the rest of my program at UHID."
- Karina Bhattacharya, University of Houston
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"I had an amazing time at the virtual IDSA Women in Design conference. So empowering to hear the stories of women and listen to their journeys of becoming well-established designers."
- Miranda Rokes, Iowa State University
"The IDC was an amazing opportunity to hear firsthand not only from designers about their experiences and insight on design but also from those who are still learning to navigate it. It was a valuable experience that fostered collaborative dialogue and provided people the perfect platform to do so."
- Nicole Huelar, San Jose State University
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“The IDC was refreshing and re-energized me for any upcoming projects and jobs. They highlighted designers from all over the world, which gave me a new perspective and approach to human centered design, healthcare design, and education. I am excited to apply this knowledge further down the line.”
- Lafayette Doty, University of Illinois at Chicago
“I found the IDC to be incredibly inspiring. As a 24-hour Zoom event with speakers from around the world, it made me feel very connected to a global design community, especially during this very disconnected time. It was also a great opportunity to connect with design professionals, whom I’ve continued to have conversations with after the event.”
- Anna Rindos, Pratt Institute
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“I really enjoyed the conference! I’m so glad I was able to go…My favorite session was definitely ‘Sketching to Communicate’ with Spencer Nugent. Those tips and skills were things I could immediately apply to my class projects.”
- Bianca Frazier, Iowa State University