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Anne Dibbern presenting during the “Charrette kickoff meeting” over Zoom.

December 17, 2020

The 2020 KEA Virtual Design Charrette took place from October 5th to 8th and had Humber students and faculty join others from around the world in the annual week-long event.

The ninth event was organized by Humber’s long-standing partner KEA Copenhagen School of Design and Technology in Denmark. It saw eight global teams representing students from Toronto, Copenhagen, São Paulo, and Milan; working together on solutions-focused projects related to the theme, “Reshape your Community - Sustainability, Entrepreneurship and Culture after the Crisis.”

The goal for the participants was to explore how local communities can be reshaped amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Humber completed the challenge with 14 students participating and representing a variety of programs including Fashion Management, Bachelor of Design, User Experience, Architectural Technology, Graphic Design, Business Management and more. Additionally, seven Humber faculty volunteered their time and expertise as team advisors.



Due to the pandemic, the event was held online for the first time as students worked across borders to create the best concept for KEA Charrette stakeholders. Each team worked with multinational faculty advisors as well as collaborators from  Danish businesses and stakeholders throughout the week.

Teams met virtually for three hours a day during the event period to collaborate on their projects and in just five short days, produced a pitch for an innovative solution in accordance with the briefs given to them by their local collaborators.

“KEA has organized the Charrette workshop now for eight years running and it is an important part of our identity as an international praxis-oriented institution,” said Anne Dibbern, International Mobility Coordinator at KEA. “We were skeptical about the learning outcome of a virtual workshop, but these concerns were quickly put to rest once the week started and we were reminded that global outlook and intercultural competences begins and ends with one thing: the people.

“The huge engagement and enthusiasm from participating businesses, students and advisors is what made the workshop a success and has taught KEA that the international experience can be achieved through many different mediums,” said Dibbern.

The event was also another example of Humber achieving the goals of its Internationalization Strategy by connecting its community members and partners to worldwide learning and international mobility opportunities; coordinating the expansion of international experiential learning opportunities in partnership with academic schools; and increasing opportunities for academic schools to leverage their expertise globally through such programs.



The winning team as per the Charrette jury was Group 5 which included Humber Bachelor of Design (UX) student Sarah Saccomanno. Their project can be viewed here.

In addition, the People's Choice Award winners — based on popular vote — was Team 4 which included Humber student Jamila Robertson and faculty advisor Rossie Kadiyska from the Humber Faculty of Business.

“Working in the Charrette was an incredible learning experience,” said Saccomanno. “We were given a client and were grouped with students and faculty advisors from around the world. Learning how to work across international borders virtually and managing things like time zones created a lot of transferable skills that I can take with me into the workforce when I graduate.

“Learning how to come up with solutions and plan strategically for a 5-day sprint really showed me how communication and organization of ideas is key. I’m so grateful to have become a part of this opportunity and would definitely do it again!”


Advisor workshop over zoom Advisor workshop over zoom where they trained the faculty advisors (including Humber faculty).