Highlanders packed the Weston Hall Gallery to celebrate the work of alumni and the next generation of architects and designers at the 10th Annual Design Showcase April 7.

The Dean Executive Council-sponsored showcase/fundraiser exhibits the design excellence produced by the architecture and industrial, digital and interior design students and alumni of the College of Architecture and Design (CoAD).

Four-piece jazz band Affect provided the soundtrack for the festive affair. Live music and soulful croons filled the air as a who’s who of gussied-up CoAD students, faculty, alums, and industry tastemakers noshed on sushi and mixed and mingled during the lively reception.

Over 100 alums turned up, helping to double last year’s attendance.

Watch designer Jonathan Ferrer ’14 was in the building with his successful espresso machine-inspired timepiece and lifestyle brand, The Brew Collection.

James Tichenor ’99, senior interactive designer at Microsoft HoloLens, delivered a lecture about the intersection of digital and physical worlds.

Meanwhile, alums Tyler Tourville ’14 and John Cassidy ’14 hosted “Field Notes: Chicago,” an intimate wine and cheese exhibit in the Littman Library’s Materials Room. Their work chronicles one week of photography orbiting the Chicago Architecture Biennial.

“We wanted to share our experience with students and offer a different perspective,” said Tourville, who works for Urban Quotient in Brooklyn and captured the images. “We hope this encourages more alums to bring back photos from their trips.”


Sophia Sobers ’11 traveled to Newark from Providence, where she teaches foundation in digital media at Rhode Island College and shoots archival images of artifacts for the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology. The interdisciplinary artist from Budd Lake provided sheer, white polyester curtains with ironed-on interfacing for the event. “In-between Occupancy,” depicts the illusion of an apartment filled with an indoor garden.

“I currently work in my apartment,” said Sobers, who hopes to one day open up her very own studio space in New York City. “I’d love to put up beams, hang things from the ceiling or even make my own wall; having my own space would allow me to feel less constrained.”

Also on display was the inventive work of current students from all disciplines of the comprehensive design school. Display easels showcased stunning design renderings and concepts of spaces, structures and furniture. This year’s showcase winners included:

Architecture: Alexander Cutrona

Digital Design: Nathalie Carrasco

Industrial Design: Raschelle Almonte

Interior Design: Pamela Ospina

“It’s a thrill for me to see what our students and alumni can do,” said CoAD dean Urs Gauchat to a full house. He beamed as alums pointed out the different high-rise buildings they’ve worked on since graduating from NJIT. “That’s what we’re here to do: open doors for you. And it’s so good to see you walk through them.”