Car Design News and General Motors today announced the eight winners of their interactive design competition in an awards ceremony on the Cadillac stand at the North American International Auto Show 2012 (NAIAS).
Over 300 design students from across the USA and Canada entered the Car Design News-GM Interactive Design Competition, launched in Spring 2011. Entrants were challenged to design both an interior and an exterior design for one of GM's four brands – Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC – each of which set a unique brief.
GM designers mentored students over a period of months for each phase of the competition to help each entrant improve their design in an interactive and open process over a dedicated website.
Both an interior and an exterior winner were announced for each brand, awarding each a paid internship at GM's design studios in Warren, Michigan and an iPad 2. Selection criteria focused on the quality and innovation of each entry, the improvement and refinement of each student's design achieved during the mentoring phase, and the level of engagement and interaction tof the students with the professional mentoring and jury team.
Three students for each brand were shortlisted as finalists in both the interior and exterior categories, totalling 24 students. All of them were in attendance at the award ceremony today, during the second press preview day of the auto show.
The judges – made up of senior design executives from GM, along with representatives of CDN and competition partners Dassault Systèmes, Faurecia and SRG Global – selected the following winners:
Michael McGee (interior phase) and Luke Mack (exterior), who both attend the College for Creative Studies (CCS) in Detroit.
Vitaliy Pankov who attends Florida Gulf Coast Community College, and Jiyeon Ha (exterior) of Art Center College of Design in Pasadena.
Yuxin Wang (interior) of the College for Creative Studies and Colin Bonathan (exterior) of Lawrence Technical University in Michigan.
TJ Edmison (interior) and Shane Harbour both of the College for Creative Studies were chosen as winners. The GMC brief proved to be the most popular choice for entrants.
Judge Dave Lyon, Executive Director of Interior Design at GM, said: "Finding and fostering new and diverse talent is a top priority at GM Design. What sets this competition apart is the level of engagement it offers for all parties involved.
"Each entrant was able to see GM Design, our design philosophy and staff on a personal level, and it allowed us to evaluate them in a meaningful, modern way. It's a great recruiting tool and there's no better way to for a student to kick start their career than an internship," he concluded.
Joe Simpson, Associate Editor of CDN and a juror added: "This competition illustrated the role that an online community and social media can play in the future of design. Not only did it allow students from across North America the opportunity to be mentored by top GM designers, the avatars they created keep the focus on their work and individual growth curve."
Competition sponsors and automotive Tier 1 suppliers Dassault Systèmes and Faurecia each awarded a scholarship at their firms. Brandon Promersberger from the Cleveland Institute of Art was chosen by Dassault Systèmes as its competition winner for his Cadillac interior. The GMC interior designed by Brook Banham of the College for Creative Studies was the overall winner selected by Faurecia.
The winners' work was also shown on the Cadillac stand as part of this year's NAIAS.
"The response and interaction this inaugural competition generated with the student design community in North America was impressive," said Lyon. "The best relationships and careers are built on solid communications, and the social media tools of this competition really helped GM and our partners achieve that. We're delighted to announce that we will hold a similar competition in 2012."