For20web20 CCAD Stories Rose White 88

Rose White (Interior Design, 2019) was a voracious reader in high school and on one of the many afternoons she spent reading at the Columbus Metropolitan Library’s main branch, she came across a book, Brooklyn Interiors, that would inspire her career path into interior design.

Rose White

One thing White has learned during her time at Columbus College of Art & Design is with the most successful interior design projects, the designer has a personal connection to the project and also understands the client. For White, who grew up in predominantly low-income areas around Columbus, nothing could be more personal than her thesis project, inspired by the issue of affordable housing and helping people who need access to it.

Her thesis project will be on view at OhioHealth Presents Chroma: Best of CCAD | The 140th Annual Student Exhibition, presented by OhioHealth, on Wednesday, May 8, 2019.

Why did you choose CCAD?

My art teacher at Columbus Alternative High School was always raving about CCAD. I was considering out-of-state schools, but, in the end, I wanted to go to a school that I felt appreciated me in a way schools out of state might not. Now that I’m here, I’m glad a place like this exists.

Can you share some details about your thesis project?


I’m looking at how housing development can be a community project. What if we took a teaching approach to building housing? What if we taught people construction skills they could apply to building their own homes? Would an affordable housing development be beneficial in Columbus, specifically? If Columbus is a sustainable-enough community where we’re creating new jobs, new opportunities, how can that translate to housing?

The business model I’m developing is for a development that could support both the design and the people living there. For Chroma, I’m working on a large-scale model, renderings, and diagrams. I’ve been tackling this project in an artsy way, using collaging to connect bits and pieces together to make a cohesive story.

What are some ways a well-designed affordable housing development can benefit the community as a whole?

I believe it’s all about identifying amenities that can be used both by residents and the public—things like incorporating gardens, parks, event spaces, maybe even a thrift store or market open to the public.  

What are you hoping to do after graduation?

I’d eventually like to go to grad school and get my PhD. Immediately after graduation, though, I’ll be working toward starting my own business, and I'd also like to learn the ropes at a design firm.

Learn more about CCAD’s Interior Design program and OhioHealth Presents Chroma: Best of CCAD | The 140th Annual Student Exhibition, happening Wednesday, May 8, at CCAD.

Photos taken by Ty Wright for CCAD.