SASD designs for Center for Family Justice


Interior design majors to present plans on April 13 to help the non-profit better serve children and teens.

A group of student designers from Shintaro Akatsu School of Design (SASD) led by Ellen Hyde Phillips will unveil proposals to help the Center of Family Justice more efficiently serve children at its Bridgeport property.

The presentation to members of the Center’s Board of Directors will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 13 at the fifth-floor conference room at the Arnold Bernhard Center, 84 Iranistan Avenue, Bridgeport.

Refreshments will be served.

The Center for Family Justice provides free, confidential, and bilingual crisis services to help people who are affected by domestic and sexual violence rebuild their lives. The nonprofit serves six Fairfield County towns, and recently has begun a $1.2-million renovation and expansion at its Bridgeport headquarters. When complete, the enhanced site will enable the Center to accommodate police, prosecutors, attorneys and other social-service and community partners to offer coordinated services to clients and their children under one roof.
As part of this renovation, Phillips, a designer and adjunct professor at SASD at the University of Bridgeport, and her interior design class have created 11 different proposals, or “concepts,” for the Center’s new waiting room that is being specially designated for children.
Phillips called the three-month-long project “a fascinating and deeply rewarding process for the entire interior design class. It was exciting and a privilege to be part of such an important project in our community.”

“This isn’t your typical waiting room,” Phillips added. “It has to be a safe, nurturing, and enriching space for some of the most vulnerable members of our communities—babies, children, and teenagers who are directly and indirectly affected by violence. They will use the room while their mothers or fathers are being assisted by the Center and its partners. The concepts that my students will present have therefore incorporated the most efficient use of space without creating a place that feels cramped or unfriendly. I’m proud of their professionalism and look forward to having them share their work with the Center and its Board of Directors.

About SASD Interior Design:
The four year Bachelor of Science in Interior Design at Shintaro Akatsu School of Design prepares graduates with the required experience for the N.C.I.D.Q. examination and state registration. In the course of their studies, students learn about gathering design information and problem solving in a range of actual projects, from residential to commercial design. Students further develop technical skills for expressing design solutions, using traditional sketching methods, computer-aided design (Auto CAD), and 3-D simulation computer programs.
Residential, hospitality, corporate offices, retail spaces and health care: all part of the SASD Interior Design Program. Most of these projects are done in collaboration with outside design firms, which gives an added real-life experience to the students and allows them to make professional connections. SASD is an accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD), the governing body of undergraduate and graduate art and design schools.

About Ellen Hyde Phillips:
In addition to teaching interior design at SASD, Ellen Hyde Phillips is owner of Fairfield Interiors and a highly recognized interior designer with over 35 years of design experience. She is also an art consultant, artist, and mentor who encourages students to adopt a holistic approach that embraces the importance of aesthetics and function in any design vision. She is a member of the American Society of Interior Design, associate member of the Interior Design Society, and is a Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS).

Media contact: Leslie Geary, (203) 576-4625,