For a second straight year, a faculty member of Bellevue College’s Interior Design program has received national recognition for innovative teaching. The Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA) recently announced that Instructor Peter Benarcik has won a merit award in the 2011 Innovative Education Awards for the entry, “Literal/Actual: Folding – a vertical design studio dealing with the nature of the built environment – literally and actually.” The honor, which recognizes innovative teaching that advances excellence in interior design education, carries a $1,000 cash prize.

Just last year, another BC instructor, Mark Mappala, won first place in the competition for an entry titled “Pop-Up Studio,” which explored retail design problems with an actual pop-up installation.

“That two of our instructors have won national awards is proof of the emphasis we put on first-rate teaching in our program, which ultimately benefits our students,” said Program Chair Michael Culpepper.

The college’s Interior Design program has been preparing students for careers in the field for over 30 years. Each year, over 650 students enroll in classes as they work toward earning degrees, including a Bachelor of Applied Arts in Interior Design that has been offered since 2009.

It is noteworthy that Benarcik is also a principle in Five Ply Design and has recently been invited to join Eastside Entrepreneurs and the Eastside Business Directory.

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