Department of Interior Design

From the Chair


A note from the Department of Interior Design Chair

Margaret Portillo is a Fellow of the Interior Design Educators Council (IDEC), professor, and dedicated member of several organizations.



Here at the University of Florida, Interior Design students and faculty work together to create a culture of shared excellence in all we do. Guided by a topflight faculty, students engage in design projects throughout the state and around the world. For example, our students designed international airports located in cities ranging from Rome to Mumbai to Beijing. Other recent projects centered on: a culinary arts institute, developmental research elementary school, living science and discovery center, and a pediatric hospital.

At UF, our shared commitment to collaborative learning creates a strong esprit de corps. Teamwork fosters creative thinking and innovation. Upper division juniors and seniors mentor new students. Students at all levels work closely with faculty. Alumni stay connected and engaged with the program. Undergraduate and graduate students become outstanding designers, academics, and professionals in the field.

Maintaining a pulse on the profession, we regularly engage with practitioners from large, well recognized firms, such as Perkins + Will, Gensler, and TVSdesign as well as with mid-size and smaller, highly innovative firms including Gresham Smith and Partners, Idea|Span and Designmind, LLC. Recent departmental lectures, receptions, seminars, and exhibitions, sponsored by industry leaders Steelcase and Knoll, not only enrich interior design students but bring the excitement of design to the larger campus community.

Each April, I meet with graduating seniors and have them reflect on their time in the program. I hear firsthand the pride in their voices as they share their many accomplishments. As one of the top professional interior design programs in the country, I know they are positioned to advance the discipline and join the ranks of knowledge leaders.

Take a few minutes to peruse our web site to learn more about the interior design department and our exciting initiatives. Enjoy!

Margaret Portillo, PhD

UF | ID Department Chair