Kitchen & Bath Business - February/March 2017 - 20
Interior design is a multi-faceted career, and
those entering it must be exposed to a variety of
disciplines. Along with learning about the mechanical, electrical and structural systems within
buildings, students need to be familiar with the
standards associated with different materials and
finishes. They need to experience other aspects of
design, like architecture and landscape, to understand the roles of each profession with which they
will work in their careers.
"We must be sure students will have an experience that helps them learn more and exposes them
to a wide variety of situations,"said Lisa Waxman,
Ph.D., chair and professor of interior design at
Florida State University in Tallahassee, Fla.
Teaching the Next Generation
A l o o k a t h o w t o d a y 's s c h o o l s a r e p r e p a r i n g
graduates to enter the industry
HAVING AN EDUCATION AND A DESIGNER CERTIFICATION turns a
hobbyist into a professional. Going to a school with an interior design focus
prepares students best for tests like the National Council for Interior Design
Qualification (NCIDQ) exam or the Associate Kitchen and Bath Designer
exam (AKBD).Whatever route students decide to take or school they choose
attend, it is through working internships, learning in the classroom and practical skill testing that they successfully enter the workforce.
"In our curriculum, students learn about and have an opportunity to apply
knowledge in a variety of settings - ranging in scope from very small projects
to the interiors of very large buildings," said Katherine Ankerson, dean of the
college of architecture at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in Lincoln, Neb.
"The list goes on and on of opportunities for our students."
ABOVE All design classes at
the Virginia Marti College of
Art and Design take place in
this room. Each student has
a station with a drafting table
and support counter, and
they also bring their laptops
to the studio.
A MULTI-FACETED PROCESS
While getting the logistics for design down in the classroom, students must
also learn to work well with clients and to present their work in a comprehensive and organized manner.
"Our interior design program trains the student in a broad knowledge
base of diverse course content in both general education and specific major
studies,"said Christina McCarthy, the interior design department chair at the
Virginia Marti College of Art and Design (VMCAD) in Lakewood, Ohio.
"Students are exposed to 21st-century competency skills: creative problemsolving abilities, analytical critical thinking skills and how to communicate
BY ERINN LOUCKS
Often the best education comes from outside of
the classroom. An internship with a designer, firm
or showroom is often a requirement for graduation.
"All of our internship sites (companies) have
been vetted, and students receive actual real-life
interior design experience," said Sofeeka Hasiuk,
associate professor for interior design at the Art
Institute of Philadelphia (AiPH)."The internship
is a requirement for our bachelors degree and often
proves to be a great source of future career starts."
Two of the professors at AiPH also sponsor
independent international trips, which are open to
all faculty, students and staff. VMCAD has an office in Milan, which helps plan internships abroad
for students. At the Anne Arundel Community
College (AACC) in Arnold, Md., the architecture
department offers a travel study at the end of the
spring semester.This year's trip is to London, Paris
and Amsterdam, but a few students already went
on another outing much closer to home.
"We recently returned from KBIS 2017, where
attendance was provided by AACC to two students for four days and three nights," said Janet
Lea Haddock, the AACC's instructional specialist
of interior design. "They were guided by a professor from AACC to ensure a positive experience."
Along with these types of educational and networking opportunities, students at AACC and
other accredited schools can join an ASID,NAHB
or NKBA student chapter. Chapters help organize
networking and community outreach activities -
like VMCAD's partnership with the KEM Cancer
Foundation, where students can create a beautiful
and healthy space for a cancer patient.
"We encourage our students to use their creativity to manipulate space while providing a safe,
functional and aesthetically pleasing environment
for their client,"said McCarthy."Students become
confident to speak freely about their design decisions, and they begin to steer their career in a
Kitchen & Bath Business / FEB.-MARCH 2017 / KBBONLINE.COM / The official publication of KBIS (KBIS.com)