One of the highest awards the Interior and Spatial Design MA program of the University of Pécs has received was awarded to master's students participating in the international Builder Architecture Competition. The “Las Vegas Affordable Housing Challenge” competition called for projects that create new ways to reduce housing prices. The designers were asked to present a flexible, innovative, pilot-phase concept for affordable housing in Las Vegas. One team of students from the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology of the University of Pécs, MA in Interior and Spatial Design, received an honorable mention, and the projects of three teams were among the top twenty.
The participants in the competition were asked to
provide solutions to the city's housing crisis - to design spaces of various sizes to accommodate families, single individuals, and couples in supported housing in the most creative way possible.
The panel of judges were looking for projects that would break away from typical ideas of housing, design, and the community while also focusing on sustainability and affordability. “Participation in the competition was integrated into the semester coursework of first-year Interior and Spatial Design MA students, with the aim of testing themselves in an international competition where they could compete against peers from other universities or even practitioners in their profession. The call for applications is compatible with the curriculum of our semester, which is devoted to residential interior design.
“Our student community is mainly international and is a very diverse group from all over the world. They will certainly face many of the challenges of the competition during their careers, given that climate change, sustainability and the energy crisis require innovative solutions, so this assignment is modelled on a real-life situation,” says dr. Ágnes Borsos, Interim Head of the Department of Interior, Applied and Creative Design.
Students who participated in the competition spent a semester in a workshop-style classroom environment developing their design proposal while attending lectures on sustainable architecture. The Las Vegas Affordable Housing Challenge Architecture Competition Honorable Mention was awarded to a team of international architects and interior designers consisting of Gantumur Bujinlkham, Lujain Ahmad Mohamada-men and Sara Ardalan Hussein.
“When we first worked as a team, the differences in cultural backgrounds, design approaches and ideas helped us better understand the architectural challenge. As designers, we first look at the problem on a large scale, as a community issue, and try to find solutions on a smaller, individual scale.
Our job as architects is to create safe and comfortable living conditions for members of the society so that they can live happily.
Participating in competitions is a great opportunity to step out of our comfort zone; the challenge broadens our horizons and develops our creative flair,” said the students summarizing their experience of the competition.
“We spend a significant amount of our time in buildings and interiors, so interior designers strive to make the surrounding space as functional as possible. At the border of architecture and interior design, the Interior and Spatial Design MA program in Pécs emphasizes human-centered design in planning and constructing spaces. Students develop a concept from a wide range of perspectives in which the details of the interior create the depth of the space, aiming to make the interior enjoyable and comfortable. At the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, the interior design-related work of the research team and its application in education provides recent and up-to-date knowledge, with a strong emphasis on spatial organization, optimal use of space and functionality. The faculty lecturers always strive to bring real-life projects to the classroom, which will provide students with valuable experience in their future careers.
“The significant presence of international students with the intercultural dialogue brings an interesting and effective diversity to the education, a kind of innovation potential,” says Professor Gabriella Medvegy, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology of the University of Pécs.