Interior Design graduate returns to mentor students for annual design competition

Fresh off a third-place finish at Formica Corporation’s FORM Student Innovation competition last spring, Georgian interior design graduate Julienne Bernier returned to the classroom for a special visit.

Every year, students from Georgian’s Honours Bachelor of Interior Design program look forward to participating in the competition to make noise in the industry, and for Julienne it was an experience to remember.

From a young age, Julienne has always been passionate about art, painting and drawing. For her, interior design is the perfect combination of creativity and structure. As a Barrie local, Georgian was a great place for Julienne to follow her dreams while staying close to home. She was also interested in the college’s co-op opportunities to get real-world work experience.

When she first heard about the Formica Corporation competition, Julienne wasn’t sure about submitting her work. “As a designer, it’s easy to have doubts about your ideas and feel nervous about showing them to the world,” she says. “I’m so grateful to have had professors who pushed me every day to be confident.”

After her win, Julienne was invited to attend a three-day convention in Chicago to network with industry professionals and become part of a diverse design community. Being surrounded by so many creative minds made her feel truly at home.

Julienne Bernier standing in front of a red and pink backdrop holding an award.
An entrance with a painting above the doors leading to a formal dining area with tables and chairs.

Andrea Vorstermans-Zado, a faculty member of Georgian’s interior design program says, “Taking part in these competitions each year allows students to be purely creative and show the best of their abilities. It’s so exciting to see all the wonderful projects that get submitted and to see the winners, especially when they come from our classrooms.”

Now as a Georgian graduate, Julienne was happy to return to the college and mentor current students on their work. “It’s really nice to see all the creativity coming from these students,” Julienne shares. “I was excited to help them however I could and sometimes outside perspectives can make a big difference.”

Four students sitting at a table pointing and looking at a laptop screen.

“It was great to have Julienne come to our class and share her experiences with us. Having a fresh pair of eyes really helped me see my own work in a new light.”

– Brooke, third-year Georgian interior design student

The future is bright for Julienne and she hopes she was able to make an impact on at least one student. “My advice for anyone wanting to become an interior designer would be to stay true to your creative opinion. It’s okay to see things differently than someone else – that’s what makes you special!” she says.

Are you ready for a rewarding career in interior design? Learn more about Georgian’s four-year Honours Bachelor of Interior Design program.

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