HIGH POINT — Samantha Fonseca, an industrial design student at Appalachian State University in North Carolina, has been named the International Society of Furniture Designers’ Foundation Pinnacle Scholarship recipient for the upcoming academic year.

The scholarship, used to offset tuition and other fees for the senior, was established in 2010 by the organization’s board of directors with the help of long-time members Richard and Catherine Frinier to “support gifted student designers from schools all across the country,” according to an ISFD release.

Currently, the scholarship pays $2,500 and is awarded to one student exhibiting outstanding creativity, innovation and technical skill each year.

Foneseca received this year’s award because she “incorporated creativity and uniqueness of thought in her designs while making them very relevant for today’s consumer lifestyles,” according to Catina Roscoe, leader of the ISFD Scholarship team. Earlier this year Fonseca also received the International Furnishings and Design Assn. Ruth Clark Scholarship for Furniture Design.

Fonseca said she has always enjoyed building things, so joining her university’s furniture design program was a “natural fit,” and she added that she is intrigued with the idea of “creating furniture that not only adds life to a home but also directly interacts with the people who have chosen that piece for their home.” Her goal is to design furniture for the retail market that is both useful and whimsical, pieces that will put a smile on someone’s face and brightness to their space.

“A product designer’s job is to create something that is not only beautiful but is appealing to consumers. Her body of work did just that,” said John Conrad, ISFD’s executive director.

Fonseca, who is from Nags Head, N.C., will be honored next year at the 10th annual Night of Luminaries and Rising Stars gala on April 28, 2021.  During the event, she and Rising Star undergraduate students from schools across the southeast U.S. will display their design projects and discuss their aspirations with top industry leaders and notables. The Night of Luminaries and Rising Stars is presented by International Furnishings and Design Assn. and supported by ISFD.

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