Maverick Graham, Andre Gagnon, Halie Gross and Julie Swinney

Winners of the School of Human Science’s Make a Difference Charrette pose with their winning project, Balanced Meal — a basket to help those with disabilities transport their meals to their residence hall. Pictured, from left, Maverick Graham, Andre Gagnon, Halie Gross and Julie Swinney.

NACOGDOCHES, Texas –– Interior design and construction management students in the Stephen F. Austin State University School of Human Sciences participated in the Make a Difference Charrette, a service-learning project, to present ideas and projects that could make a difference to those in the SFA community.  

Approximately 75 students comprising 18 groups were involved in the project. The groups included interior design and construction management students working together. Five of the groups were named finalists by their peers and presented their projects Friday before a group of judges on the SFA campus. 

“I think the charrette made the students think outside the box a little bit and helped them learn how to work with students from other disciplines,” said Sally Swearingen, SFA associate professor of interior design and construction management. 

Following an hour of presentations, judges deemed the group that included Andre Gagnon, Halie Gross, Julie Swinney and Maverick Graham as the winner for their project, Balanced Meal — a basket to help those with disabilities transport their meals to their residence hall. Made by using a 3D printer, the basket contains space for a to-go box and cup holder that accommodates different beverage sizes. It easily folds for storage. The group received $200 courtesy of Johnson Furniture. 

“The project was important because it gave us the opportunity to help those with disabilities in our community,” Graham said. 

The project finalists included:

The Umbrella Holster
The umbrella holster is the brainchild of students Bryce Todd, Kailey Wolf, Kristen Sprott and Victoria Bounds. The mounting bracket holds an umbrella on an outdoor bench or chair to provide shade and help protect those around campus from the sun and rain.  

Try Trivia While You Wait
This interactive trivia game idea was created by Adrian Bocanegra, Clayton Eggleston, Sarah Krejci and Hannah Scott. It is designed to reduce boredom for those standing in long lines. 

Innovated Stall Hook
The innovated stall hook, by Andrea Rico, Shea Davis, Hunter Rowland and Genesis Trejo, is a redesigned take on the hook often found on the inside of bathroom stall doors. This project involves a notch that will hold a phone, wallet, purse or other personal items, as well as hooks to hang keys or small articles of clothing. 

ADA Visibility Kit
The ADA visibility kit was designed by Julian Villegas, Karla Salinas, Julie Duzich, Jasmine Benton and Whitney Collins. It comprises redesigned and colorful stickers, bracelets, placards and decals to assist those with disabilities. 

“I was very impressed with the thought the students put into these projects,” said event judge Nathan Wicker, senior editorial specialist in the Division of University Marketing Communications at SFA. “Selecting the winner was difficult because each project had merit and could benefit the SFA community. It was fun to see the students’ excitement during their presentations.”