Working Your Way through Interior Design School

Many students who want to practice interior design are dedicated and passionate enough to make it to the coveted “Master of Professional Studies in Interior Design” (MPSID) degree. However, some of those students may find it necessary to work while attending classes, making it much more difficult to put in the time required to get there. There is hope for those that are willing to go the extra mile, even if your personal situations make it seem as if you’ll never be able to make it.

Interior design schools offer an advantage over some other types of schools because, much like an architect would build a house, interior designers learn their profession in deliberate and methodical steps that build on the step before it. This means that working and going to school at the same time can be advantageous for the aspiring master of interior design.

Learning basic interior design in order to break into the market is a great way to get started, especially if you are in a financial position that requires you to get back to work as soon as possible (or continue working while attending classes). The good news is that, at most schools, completion of a certificate program is a requirement for applying to an advanced degree program.

Students who want to earn an advanced degree from an accredited interior design school are often tasked with first coming up with a portfolio of work through the school’s certificate program. Completing a school’s certificate program also qualifies the student for an entry level job in the industry. Entry level jobs in interior design often require at minimum, a certificate of completion in some sort of formal interior design school training. Since the certification program at most interior design schools is around 24-credit hours, it doesn’t take long to reach entry level status.

Eventually, it will be necessary to spend some time in the real world of interior design to complete the master’s degree program and working in the industry while completing studies is the best way to do that. (Not to mention the convenience of having an employer who is probably happy to help you since you share a passion for the art.)

After certification, students at an interior design school can apply to a degree program. If it is the students intent to make it to Master of Professional Studies, he or she will most likely be advised to complete an undergraduate degree (an AAS or BFA) before proceeding to the next level. This is because the next level, Master of Fine Arts, requires the student to know all of the things taught by the school at the AAS and BFA level.

Once here, it is only a matter of time before the degree program can be completed. It may be a matter of a lot of time, especially if you need to take part time class loads while working. But with the right set up and a good career counselor, taking deliberate steps through interior design school can really add up to a well-paid professional career.

Interior Design News

ASID Says Interior Design School a Must for Public Health

“A professional interior designer is qualified by education.” This first statement in a brochure promoting legislative regulation in states without minimum licensing and interior design school requirements from the American Society of Interior Designers echoes what some in the education industry has said for years.

Some states still do not have laws on the books stating that this trade carries certain health and safety risks if work is completed by a non-certified interior designer, but the ASID plans to change all of that.

The society is actively lobbying the political committees that handle labor regulations and requirements in states that do not have laws and all, as well as states who have laws that the ASID finds to be insufficient. The society’s primary message is that interior design school and subsequent licensing or certification is a matter of public concern and public safety.

Further on the matter, the ASID Brochure says that legislation validates the profession, making it a recognized professional and defining “its scope of practice”.

Is the ASID accurate in its implication that a lack of interior design training is detrimental to public health? The opposition says absolutely not; they find it difficult to even uncover cases where a person was harmed by an unlicensed interior designer. The opposition also says it makes the market less competitive for organizations like the ASID.

In Florida, where it is criminal to work as an interior designer without attending a school or, at the very least, being licensed in the state as an interior designer, a person can go to jail for working without the certification. The customer that hired them can go to jail too, if the prosecutors prove the consumer knew that the designer wasn’t certified.

However, it should be noted that, certified or not, the angers of hiring a designer who hasn’t earned the title through interior design school and rigorous testing is an obvious risk. As so many designers point out, interior design isn’t “interior decorating” and involves a cross section of skills including familiarity with electricity, construction, and architecture.

Interior Design News

The New Era in Interior Design Classes

Interior design schools with strictly traditional objectives in their design classes are being faced with a new challenge in recent years – students who want to learn more than how to pander to the highest paying clients they can find.

Thanks to a generation of young design students who are coming of age in an era of economic uncertainty and glaring gaps in income levels in the country, forward thinking art and design schools are revamping curricula to accommodate the growing desire to make interior design a more socially conscious profession.

Once upon a time (less than two decades ago), interior designers were thought of as a group of professionals hired primarily to fulfill the needs of the world’s wealthiest consumers. It was a common concept among the general population that only those with enough money to pay top dollar for aesthetically pleasing architecture and interior design needed the services of an interior designer.

Thanks to the help of some heavy-hitting, widely recognized players in the industry however, interior design is now on a path to become part of a growing trend in socially conscious professionals that are beginning to take over architecture and design industries.

A famous example is the Rural Studio Program at Auburn University. Sambo Mockbee started the program in the 90’s and died a decade ago, but his humanitarian ideals are perpetuated at Auburn and other schools of interior design and architecture throughout the country.

With a new generation of students keenly aware of the potential to make a positive impact on society bolstering this concept, these programs are becoming exceedingly popular at interior design schools. And while interior design classes still educate students on the finer things in life when it comes to architectural design, aesthetics, and sustainable systems, the landscape of interior design education is changing to match the industry’s desire to take a more active role in humanitarian efforts.

Interior Design News

Interior Design Students Design Women’s Shelter

Interior design students recently helped redesign a women and children’s abuse center in Michigan.

The students joined forced with Central Michigan University staff members to redesign the interior of the Midland Shelter for abused women and children while making a friendly environment for adults and children who enter the shelter.

The majority of the work involved redesigning the children’s areas at the shelter, a project that was already in the works by the shelter’s program designers. The program designer worked with an interior design instructor in the past and called on her and her interior design students to help design the youth spaces at the shelter.

The interior design students came up with concepts and designs that would fit within the shelter’s limited funding options and people from the shelter and with other volunteers that were on hand to help bring those designs to life. As one of the tougher scenarios an interior designer might face in a real-world scenario, the students had to go back and adjust their ideas several times as budgeting and funding changed throughout the course of the design phase.

This is often the case with interior designs for non-profit agencies and those who want to help people on a limited budget. While the interior designs of the shelter are important to the recovery process, especially among children and teens, there are still funding limitations. One of the big limitations is labor options – for this particular project, students had to come up with designs that could be executed by the volunteer labor to which the shelter had access.

This means that the interior design concepts had to be simple enough for others to understand – even without a professional architect or carpenter on hand. In the end, the interior design class made a significant change to the tone of the teen and play rooms at the shelter by recruiting the skills and products of an area high school sewing class.

Interior Design News

Interior Design School Professor Tells Home Owners to Think Green

Graphic Design School Software As interior design schools focus more on sustainable designs and younger generations of students make their mark on history by being more aware of energy consumption as it related to aesthetic appeal, at least one company is stepping up to tell home owners that a remodel may be all they need to start being “green”.

Owner of Ryan Architecture and professor of interior design and construction at Anne Arundel Community College in Arnold, Maryland; Mike Ryan recently stood in front of an audience at Wilson College to discuss how each individual impacts the global environment.

According to Ryan, who talked to the audience about the American Society of Interior Design and the RE-GREEN program form the U.S. Green Building Council, Americans spend all but 10% of their time indoors. He also pointed out that, thanks to climate control methods inside our homes, architects and interior designers spend much less time thinking about the layout and design of our building. It is in a structures layout and interior design that energy consumption can be increased or decreased when given thoughtful consideration.

Interior design schools are already on board, but Ryan is attempting to get homeowners on the same page. Struggling with energy costs and unfinished interior design projects, such as an unfinished basement, can benefit a home owner financially and positively impact the environment by considering which products and how far the product has to be shipped to get to them when they think about home projects.

Interior design students can help by taking more time to learn about what is truly considered a “sustainable” interior design, to include products and the sources of those products. Arrangement, natural lighting, heat conduction, blocking out unwanted heat, and other energy consumption techniques can be implemented within the realm of interior design to help minimize the impact of a space on the environment.

Interior Design News

Interior Design School Celebrates Twelve Years

An interior design school exhibited works of art created by present and former students earlier this month as a way to celebrate its anniversary while bringing awareness to environmental issues.

The Sanskrithi School of Interior Design was established in Kochi, India in 2000 and is one of just three official interior design schools in the state.

Earlier this month, the school exhibited twelve pieces of artwork fashioned by present and former students through a variety of mediums, designs, and forms. The showcase included paintings and caricatures, and items such as fabric presentations and painted pottery that the students hand crafted during their time at the school. Murals by students and instructors were on display during the exhibition, as well.

Through the use of different types of materials and art mediums, the interior design school was not only celebrating its twelfth anniversary, but attempting to bring more awareness to the global warming phenomenon happening around the globe.

Though the interior design school presented different forms and concepts of art in their brightly lit exhibition room to celebrate the establishment of their school, all of the art pieces were created with the earth in mind. The works were created using the colors and forms of nature, such as the sights around their home state in Kochi and clay pottery creations.

Interior design students that were responsible for the works were from various disciplines of the study including painting and architecture. Many of the former students at the school are now working in the region as professional interior designers. Several graduates allowed their water color paintings and pottery pieces to be shown at the exhibit.

The Sanskrithi School of Interior Design offers a diploma in civil engineering through a one year certificate program, with a focus on architecture and engineering and resides in the Kerala district.

Interior Design News

Interior Design School Demonstrates Details of Design Jobs

Interior design students are demonstrating the laborious process of interior design with a keen eye on sustainable design through a unique showcase at their school in Kalamazoo, MI.

Along the way, they have also shown the intensive course of study one must endure at an interior design school to reach the peak of professional potential in the industry.

The five seniors in the interior design school at Western Michigan University put together the intense representation of an interior designer’s job to draw attention to the fact that their job is more involved than the average person might think. The students used as many recycled materials as possible to create everything from miniature tin-foil chandeliers in their model designs to the rather large wires covered in shopping bags they suspended from the ceiling of a classroom in their interior design school.

While sustainability is a “trend” in many areas of art and design, it is something that more and more interior designers and students are focusing on because they understand better their own role in conservation efforts. Statistics among general populations also show that the younger members of society are more focused on conservation, resulting in a more focused effort from college-aged interior designers.

Along the walls of the student display are pictures of the processes they must follow to achieve a new interior design, pointing out that their job is not limited to simply decorating or dreaming up remodeling ideas for others to carry out later. Interior design schools teach myriad functions that all come together when a designer is investigating a problem and producing a pleasing redesign or concept for a new interior space.

Western Michigan University’s interior design program teaches the latest technologies and concepts for the interior design industry, to include training in modeling, concept drafts, and drafting to help future designers learn the process of problem solving.

Interior Design News

Interior Design School Wins Big with Contest Requirements

For design students at an interior design school in Vermillion, Alberta, a school requirement to enter at least three design competitions each year might be a golden ticket to becoming an industry leader without ever leaving college.

Two students of the interior design school at Lakeland College recently won industry recognition for an award-winning design they created during a fast-paced redesign competition sponsored by the National Kitchen and Bath Association.

Students Rebecca Johnston and Julie Arthurs won third and fourth place, to the surprise of some of the competitors. Their interior design school is small and one of more than 30 schools to enter the design competition. However, the two redesigned a kitchen concept for a contemporary couple as part of the timed challenge that won them their places on the board and accolades from the industry representatives that judged the event.

The contestants’ entries were sent off to New Jersey for judging to ensure that an unbiased round of criticism would be given to the students’ works. There were nearly 400 designs submitted by contestants from interior design schools around the region in both the United States and Canada.

Another student at the interior design school, Courtney Federspiel, won a third place award for a bathroom redesign she completed in a separate portion of the competition. In a report by Lloydminster Source (news publication) Federspiel said the bathroom design competition started their first day back at school in September. Unlike the timed kitchen event, the bathroom competition requires immense details from the students at the design school.

The interior design school produces award winning competitors for this competition each year. This is the ninth year running that a student of Lakeland College has won at the competition, a feat that only served to raise the standards for the next round of students according to a school publication.

Interior Design News

Are Interior Design Courses Important for other Professions?

Interior design courses can lead to a college degree for those who wish to be a professional designer, but they can be important for other professions, too.

Anyone earning a commissioned pay check based on real estate values and homes sales might consider taking a few interior design courses to help them make it through economic turbulence in the industry, but some industry experts say “Leave it to the experts.”

Interior designers are often called in to help real estate representatives sell homes that are out of date or completely out of touch with current home market trends. As home trends change, homes that go up for sale are much more likely to result in a SOLD sign in the front yard when they are aligned with the modern trends that home buyers are attracted to.

In a report by the Sydney, interior design educators caution against taking interior design classes lightly. They stick to their message that it is a difficult occupation and that skill level is apparent and visible in the work that agents perform.

”Regardless of education, design is an industry where visual evidence of your competence through your folio and your ability to talk intelligently about your design discipline may be all an employer requires,” said Geoff Fitzpatrick of the Design Institute of Australia.

Interior designers are expensive. Even more expensive is a real estate agent attempting to modernize the home without any official interior design training offered by some of the independent classes available to them. Not understanding the entire process of design can be costly. Time and money are wasted when an under-trained (or untrained) individual sets out to redesign a home for the sake of making the sale. Successful interior designers and real estate agents in the industry agree that this type of training is important in the home sales industry.

Interior Design News

Are Online Interior Design Classes Sufficient?

Online interior design classes are appropriate in certain fields of study, but may not provide enough direct feedback and instruction for all aspects of interior design degree programs.

However, there are many parts of interior design that fit very well into the realm of online training; blending online classes with in-classroom curriculum might be just what some students need to achieve their degree goals while maintaining a flexible schedule.

Nearly all levels of interior design –whether interior decorating or actual, physical redesign – relies heavily on computer aided drafting and design (CADD) software. Learning how to use this software is essential; a core ability for one to become a successful professional. Interior design classes offered online that train students on the use and function of these types of programs is essentially a “hands off” process. As long as the student is able to learn on his own pace and without direct supervision, learning software skills is an ideal candidate for online training.

Much of the foundational knowledge students are taught in their first year of interior design classes fall into a category that seems safe for online classes. The drafting and graphic design portions of interior design are done with software, as we mentioned, and learning the concepts to create these designs is standard in the industry so little teacher supervision is required.

Students may begin to exit the realm of acceptable online classes in interior design at the end of the second year of college, when project coordination and management become essential to obtaining a degree. While the skills can still be learned through online interior design classes, project management and team activities in the classroom provide a critical sense of reality that one might face in the professional world. One in which real clients change their minds and real people with emotions have to be an important part of the design process.