Profile photo of Owen Foster, M.I.D.
Owen Foster, M.I.D.
Director and Professor of Practice, Innovation in Honors
Honors College
  owen-foster@utc.edu
  306 Guerry Center

Owen Foster is Professor of Practice and Director of Innovation in Honors in the Honors College. Quirky and conversational, his journey started as a farm boy in the cotton fields of Alabama, where he began dreaming of how to help the world around him become a better place. Those dreams and life lessons instilled in him on the farm still fuel that passion even today. Owen is a storyteller and shows others that the most powerful way of connecting to people is by relating to them. He believes that every experience is an opportunity to learn something new and that the measure of success is about applying yourself to everything you do.

Owen's background is diverse with experience in architecture, landscape, environmental, and industrial design, Owen has worked on an extensive array of projects ranging from small consumer products to complete green environments for several municipalities around the world to speaking at global summits. In his most recent venture, Owen is a co-founder, director, and overall ‘Troublemaker’ of Aether Global Learning and SHiFT Design Camp. With an amazing team, he looks to create freethinking empathetic practitioners who will passionately lead their local and global communities through logical discourse, impeccable craft, and sound strategic direction. Owen wants to provide a world-class educational experience through platforms for discovery, creation, and reflection for the global community of makers, thinkers, changers, givers, and leaders.

Though successful in those endeavors, becoming an educator and mentor is his calling. His passion for teaching led him to professorships at Auburn University and the University of Louisiana-Lafayette in the field of industrial design. Recently he held the positions of Industrial Design Group Department chair (industrial design, design management, service design, design for sustainability, business of design, interaction design, and marine design) and professor at Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD). Now at UTC, Owen’s goal is to energize students by helping them see the endless possibilities of design.


“Imagine a world in which an entire generation feels prepared and empowered to take on any challenge. Let's teach one another, learn from one another, and come together to create something amazing.”