Award-Winning Bonita Springs Interior Design Firm Donates Furniture to International College

A warm, Florida-style ambiance awaits visitors who step inside International College’s North Naples campus lobby.

The newly designed International College Welcome Center is made possible through the generous contribution of Collins & DuPont Interiors, the Bonita Springs-based, nationally recognized and award-winning design firm specializing in custom residential, project and lighting commercial interiors.

Collins & DuPont donated its services, a designer and furniture for the project. The full-service design firm serves the Naples, Bonita Springs, Sanibel and Captiva Islands area.

After International College moved to its new home in North Naples in Fall 2000, officials began laying the groundwork for plans to create a Welcome Center for students and visitors, said Louis Traina, Ed.D., vice president of Institutional Advancement.

“The College was planning on doing something nice in that area, and Collins & DuPont stepped up to the plate and made that happen for us,” he said.

Wanda Wagner, Collins & DuPont director of business development, said the firm’s founders, Sherron P. DuPont, ASID, president, and Kim V. Collins, ASID, Vice President, have made a commitment to lifelong learning.

“As part of that commitment, we were made aware of a need that International College had and felt compelled to meet that need,” Wagner said. “We applaud International College for helping develop the resource base for businesses in the community and look forward to partnering with them in other ways in the future.”

Karin Berman, ASID, Collins & DuPont interior designer, said it was the first time she designed a higher learning institution in her four-year tenure with the design firm. Her vision was to create a comfortable and inviting, yet professional environment that would reflect International College’s image.

“We didn’t want wild, abstract patterns jumping out at students,” Berman said. “We needed comfortable, durable, functional furniture that could accommodate students and would flow with traffic without crowding things.”

The result is a Welcome Center that fuses International College’s school colors – burgundy and gray – with a splash of Florida’s tropical hues of tan and green.

To complete the project, Collins & DuPont donated two burgundy sofas, a wood and wicker coffee table, club chairs, leaf-decorated lamps, end tables, tropical-designed end chairs and a custom-designed rug incorporating the school’s burgundy and gray colors on a tan background.

“This design represents what our students deserve when they come here – a warm, inviting and professional environment,” Traina said.

Freshman Nick Krejcha, 20, said he goes to the Welcome Center often during class breaks.

“It’s comfortable and a nice place to hang out with classmates and talk,” he said. “I think it represents the school well.”

International College President Terry McMahan said the college plans to express its appreciation to Collins & DuPont by dedicating a plaque to the design firm. The plaque will hang in the Welcome Center.
© 2012

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