IRVINE, CA — Thermador, the Irvine, CA-based manufacturer of luxury home appliances, has launched a major new initiative aimed at empowering a new generation of talent from under-represented communities, the company announced.
The “Thermador Diversity in Design Pipeline Initiative,” launched in partnership with the Interior Design Society (IDS), will support up to five collegiate students in their senior year at an accredited interior design program, the company said. The comprehensive prize package will include a financial scholarship of $10,000 toward tuition, a one-year mentorship program with a hand-selected interior designer, invitations to key industry events and a one-year student membership to IDS, including access to local chapter events and larger professional networking opportunities.
“We feel a great sense of responsibility to ensure we do our part to create a supportive and inclusive environment for diversity, creativity and innovation that allows talent to break into this industry and thrive,” said Beatriz Sandoval, director of brand marketing for Thermador.
Professional designers are also invited to participate by becoming a mentor, Thermador officials said, noting that five mentors will be selected to be paired with each student awarded. These mentors will guide their respective mentees through the year-long programming outlined by Thermador and be invited as guests of the company to the same industry events, Thermador added, noting that recent research revealed that a lack of diversity was a leading concern for the interior design profession, following only a lack of available jobs and competitive wages. Additionally, 34% of all interior designers said they experienced racial discrimination in their career, including 66% of Black designers and 54% of Hispanic/LatinX designers, Thermador said.
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