July 23rd, 2019

Emberly a rewarding experience

By Bobinec, Greg on February 11, 2019.

Greg Bobinec

Lethbridge Herald


A Lethbridge College student was voted as a finalist for a major industry award for a home they designed.

The Emberly, designed by Interior Design Technology (IDT) student Lina Wiebe, was a finalist in the annual Building Industry and Land Develop Association (BILD) of Lethbridge’s Awards of Excellence in the $230,000-$260,000 single-family category.

The Emberly was created as part of the inaugural Ashcroft Design Challenge, where teams of students in IDT created competing home designs. Wiebe designed the floor plan, while Jada Kot brought it to life through 3D animation. The design was selected as the winner by a panel of judges from Ashcroft Master Builder and was built by the company within the Garry Station community, with Wiebe working for Ashcroft as a paid intern.

“It was an incredible honour to have my design be nominated for the BILD Awards,” says Wiebe, a second-year student of IDT program. “The Emberly is the first home I have ever designed and having it come so far is a testament to the wonderful support Lethbridge College gives its students. It also reaffirms that I have made the right decision by returning to school to take Interior Design Technology.”

The BILD Lethbridge awards ceremony honoured many homebuilders in a wide variety of categories. Faculty in the IDT program say having a student-designed home to be judged among the best of the best in the city demonstrates the talent of the students in the program.

“The fact that we were even able to be a part of the competition is one of the highlights of my teaching career,” says Cherie Reitzel, Interior Design Technology instructor. “Lina had a really amazing understanding of the construction industry and a knack for detail. She tried to do some creative things that were a little different for Ashcroft.”

With the Ashcroft Design Challenge, proceeds of the sale of the home are being donated back to the college, and a scholarship award through a contest to a deserving student who otherwise wouldn’t be able to pursue post-secondary education. The collaboration with Ashcroft is an example of the industry partnerships that are vital to the Lethbridge College and their students’ future success. By working closely with a company that frequently hires the college’s graduates, students gain exposure to potential employers, while receiving industry-specific training.

“Working closely with industry ensures that our students are prepared to pursue meaningful careers once they graduate,” says Paul Burns, Lethbridge College President. “As an institution, we are very proud of Lina and Jada. Their accomplishment is a testament to their own talents, and to the work of our Interior Design Technology program to make sure our students are ready for what happens next.”

Ashcroft Master Builder is already preparing to build the second edition of the Emberly home, based off the success of the initial design. The second year of the Ashcroft Design Challenge is currently underway, with students preparing to pitch their designs to Ashcroft in April, followed by the winner being announced at the annual surRENDER event on April 24. For more information on the design challenge, visit lethbridgecollege.ca.

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