Assistant Professor of Interior Design Meirav Goldhour worked with students to complete a design project for a Jewish Community Center in Greenville, South Carolina.
Chabad Rabbi Kesselman purchased an old BBT bank in Greenville to serve as a multi-purpose space for Jewish community events. Professor Goldhour saw a learning opportunity for her upcoming fall class students, as well as a chance to provide the Rabbi and his wife, Musie, some creative ideas for using the new space. Students visited the site with Professor Goldhour, took measurements of the space, and had a conversation with Rabbi Keselman on the requirements and desires for the center. Professor Goldhour was so impressed by the amazing job her students have done with this challenge. “Designing a kosher kitchen is very complex,” she said. “You are required to separate all contact between meat and dairy, as well as have sets of two for all kitchen fixtures, appliances, cabinetry, and shelving.
This project was a great cultural interaction for the students as well as a learning curve on how to design an untraditional kitchen.” Professor Goldhour continued, “This was not a hypothetical project and it gave the students an opportunity to get a taste of the real-world experience by communicating their design work to individuals outside of the design field. This was the first time we had students deal with this type of space; it gave them the tools they would need if they ever were to move to a city with a large Jewish population such as New York or Pittsburgh.”
As part of the students’ design course and in collaboration with the Chabad Rabbi, they worked in teams to come up with ideas and design solutions for a lobby space, a multi-purpose hall, and a kosher heating kitchen. They created floor plans, selected materials, and created realistic computerized renderings to reveal their design ideas. This partnership provides the students with real-world experience designing a kosher kitchen for the first time, as well as offering the Jewish Community Center creative designs with computer-generated room simulations.