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USM Interior Design Students Tour Mohawk Group

Wed, 02/28/2024 - 11:35am | By: Ivonne Kawas

USM Interior Design

Juniors in the Interior Design program at The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) were treated recently with an opportunity to tour Mohawk Group, the commercial flooring division of Mohawk Industries - the largest floor covering manufacturer in the world.

During their visit to the headquarters located in Dalton, Ga., students got a firsthand look at the production process of high-quality and innovative flooring solutions and learned all about the company’s commitment to sustainability and innovation.

“Industry tours are an integral part of our curriculum, as they empower students with the perspectives needed to gain insights into future career opportunities,” said Alvis Lawson Jr., assistant teaching professor of Interior Design and program coordinator. “The immersive experience also allows students to connect classroom learning with real-world scenarios. Most importantly, it provides a platform for our students to network and build connections, fostering a sense of community and support within the industry.”

Anna Patrick from Covington, La., hailed the unique experience in which the group took tours and witnessed a production process unlike any other.

“We were generously sponsored by Mohawk Flooring Company, giving us the learning experience of a lifetime,” said Patrick. “We were taken to Mohawk's headquarters where they guided us through the entire production process of laminate, vinyl, hardwood, and carpet flooring.”

Patrick notes that the group took a tour through some of the top facilities, including Mohawk’s Yarn Extrusion Factory, Carpet Manufacturing, and Light Lab Design Center.

“The tours began at the Yarn Extrusion Factory, where we observed the process of extruding yarn from synthetic granulates,” said Patrick. “The tour continued at the Pilot Plant, where they showcased the sewing and weaving of intricate carpet samples. Afterwards, we went to the Carpet Manufacturing Factory, where they revealed the dyeing and printing process of large-scale carpets tailored for hotels and commercial buildings. The experience concluded with a tour of the Light Lab, unveiling this year’s top carpet designs and their inspirations.”

For Patrick, the highlight of the trip was gaining an insider's perspective on the dynamic carpet design world, as well as getting to network with some of the employees and interns.

“Our group appreciated gaining an insider's perspective on the carpet design world as we felt we were among the first groups to witness these extensive design projects,” said Patrick. “Post-tour, to cap off the trip, we met Mohawk employees for dinner, allowing us to interact and network with interns and employees. As we prepare for joining the workforce, it was enjoyable to witness individuals of similar age expressing their love for the company and their roles.”

Anna Grace Lindsay from Madison, Miss. encourages underclassmen to go witness firsthand how Mohawk is transforming the flooring industry.

“The Mohawk trip proved to be both thrilling and enlightening,” said Lindsay. “The most cherished experience for me was gaining insights into the process of fiber production, and the factory's machinery left a lasting impression. The technological innovations introduced by Mohawk to reduce its environmental footprint were truly impressive. I highly recommend this trip as a must-see for underclassmen, and I personally encourage interior designers to visit Georgia and witness how Mohawk is transforming the flooring industry.”

Learn more about USM’s Interior Design program.