First Name
Last Name

Emma Foster

Interior Design

Interior Design Intern

Where is your hometown?
Amherst, Maine

What was your degree program at RIT/NTID?
Major: Interior Design Minor: Construction Management

What is your graduation date from RIT/NTID?
May 2022

Where are you currently employed for your co-op or internship, and what is your job title?
My internship was right here in Rochester, I did some of the internship in-person and some remote! My title was Interior Design Intern/DeafSpace & Accessibility Consultant.

What are your work responsibilities?
I helped out with quite a wide variety of items in their project at Innovation Square. While there were several different components, they were all related to making the property more accessible for deaf and hard-of-hearing users! I researched and found different alarm systems, furniture pieces and amenities to add to the space to increase accessibility within the space as well as the acoustics. Some of these elements consisted of LED strobe light fire alarms and mirrors in areas where it is often difficult to locate sound and in areas where it is helpful to see your surroundings behind you (parking garage, waiting in front of the elevator, etc.). We also discussed how corporations need to consider the deaf community and how it is important that employees on site be able to properly communicate and cater to deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals.

How does your co-op or internship relate to your degree from RIT/NTID?
My internship revolved around accessible design, which is something we discuss a lot in the interior design program at RIT/NTID. We are taught about Universal Design concepts and ADA requirements, and then how to go above and beyond these standards. Principles related to accessibility affect so much more than the sole user with a wheelchair or a user that is deaf, these changes improve everyone's experience in the space whether they know it or not!

Do you have any advice for any current students attending RIT/NTID?
Take advantage of every opportunity that comes your way! I am in my last semester, and looking back I am so happy I said yes as often as I did. With graduation coming up and thinking about not being on campus next year, I'm realizing just how many experiences, connections, and learning opportunities I've had because of my time here at RIT/NTID.