Interior Design Degree Programs
Interior design is an exciting field. Many universities and colleges around the world offer reputable interior design programs for undergraduate and graduate students alike. It is important to do your research to decide which school offers an accredited degree program that best prepares you for your future goals. But how do you prepare for a degree in interior design?
Consult your guidance counselor in high school to find out what courses your school offers that will help advance your knowledge in the field of interior design before you enter college. Depending on what you plan on learning, there may be certain course requirements needed.
Schools with Interior Design Degrees
Schools with Online Interior Design Degrees
Careers with an Interior Design Degree
“What jobs can I do with a degree in interior design?” While you are earning your interior design degree at a college or university or even through an online degree program, you also need to consider your career options. Narrowing down your career options can help you best shape your academic studies around a specific career you are most interested in pursuing.
Entry Level Careers in Interior Design
Once you earn a bachelors or associate degree in interior design, you can apply the skills you’ve learned to various career options. There are a variety of different paths you can take once you get your degree. Some careers you may qualify for with an interior design bachelors degree are listed and described here.
Interior Design Degree: Jobs
Interior Design AssistantAn interior design assistant helps the senior interior designer by researching desired patterns and colors for furniture and other decor for clients. Interior design assistants are also sometimes responsible for the pickup and delivery of samples and arranging final setups. A bachelors degree in interior design is usually required by most employers, and qualified applicants typically possess excellent organizational and communication skills as well as the ability to follow strict directions and meet deadlines. Previous experience gained through internships is also beneficial.
Interior design assistants may earn an annual salary of around $28,000, based on education and experience levels.
An art consultant often works for a consulting firm or as an independent contractor hired by homeowners, health facilities, businesses, and more to assist in selecting and purchasing artwork for decorative purposes. Artwork may include anything from photographs, paintings, sculptures, and more. Art consultants often have bachelor degrees in subjects like art history, fine arts, and interior design. They are attentive to detail and possess excellent communication skills in order to maintain connections with artists, galleries, and other suppliers.
Art consultants may earn around $33,000 annually, based on education and experience levels as well as whether they are self-employed or work for consulting firms.
An interior architect designs the inside of a building or structure to specific standards set to ensure that, when built, the structure is capable of performing its intended function, whether a home, office, or more. Interior architects take into consideration each function of every room in order to create a building best suited for its purpose. Interior architects usually possess degrees in some form of architecture, but a background in interior design or even a bachelors degree in interior design also proves useful to fill the job of an interior architect.
Interior architects may earn over $39,000 annually, based on education and experience levels.
A space planner works to make sure a company utilizes the space they rent as efficiently as possible, helping the business grow as a whole with the help of satisfied employees and happy customers. He or she may be self-employed or work for a firm. Space planners are responsible for recording the dimensions of an office space to determine the most useful ways to arrange office furniture and cubicles. They are highly skilled in mathematics with at least a bachelors degree in interior design or a related field with good communication and organizational skills.
Space planners may earn around $42,000 annually, based on education and experience levels.
Advanced Careers in Interior Design
After earning a higher degree in interior design (such as a masters degree) or gaining a few years experience upon earning your bachelors degree, you will qualify for higher job positions. Just a few you may qualify for can be found with their descriptions below.
A store planner often works for a retail chain, designing general store layouts to promote new merchandise and set up advertisements to draw the attention of potential customers. A store planner focuses on everything from lighting to color schemes to mannequin placement and decor in order to appeal to the targeted audience of a store. Store planners do not necessarily need college degrees, but a degree in interior design, fashion merchandising, or industrial design can be particularly useful. They possess good communication skills to collaborate with other employees and outstanding organizational skills as well as the ability to pay close attention to detail. It is often recommended by employers that applicants for a store planner position also possess a few years of experience in retail design.
Store planners may earn over $51,000 annually, based on education and experience levels.
Design Project Manager
A design project manager serves as a sort of supervisor for various interior and/or architectural projects and keeps in contact with clients in order to provide them with updates and answer any questions they may have. A design project manager also typically oversees teams of multiple projects to ensure production is running smoothly. He or she may also prepare and present project plans to potential clients, as well. Design project managers typically possess at least a bachelors degree in related fields like interior design and architecture. They have outstanding oral and written communication skills for their leadership positions, and it is recommended that they have at least three years experience in the field in which they are interested.
Design project managers may earn around $53,000 annually, based on education and experience levels.
Companies that Hire People with Interior Design Degrees
Many people with interior design degrees are independent contractors, but it is also not uncommon for people with interior design degrees to work for specific companies to improve the living and/or working conditions of others. A list of examples of companies and organizations that hire people with interior design degrees is located below.
Johnson Controls - headquarters in Milwaukee, WI; hires positions for designers, program managers, etc.
The Design Studio - located in Jacksonville, FL; hires positions for interior design assistants and more
Forever 21 - locations across the U.S.; hires positions for retail design and development assistants, assistant designers, product developers, etc.
Memorial Sloan Kettering - located in New York, NY; hires positions for project coordinators, design associates, etc.
Mohawk Industries - headquarters in Calhoun, GA; hires positions for assistant design consultants, architectural representatives, management assistants, project managers, etc.
There are a variety of career locations for your interior design degree. The great thing about interior design is that you can do it anywhere, and each place has its own unique feel, while still retaining the same basic concepts. You can go long distance such as the London, UK, Toronto, Canada or Sydney, Australia. You could decide between the big apple of NYC vs the small town near your home. The choice is yours!
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Is A Interior Design Degree Right For You?
If you've got a master knack for decorating with style while keeping decorated areas functional, then perhaps a career in interior design is the right path for you. Without an interior design degree or another related diploma as your foundation, it will be much more difficult becoming an interior designer. Education and career options don't stop here. Continue your research for further options within the field of interior design.
*Note: It is often recommended that people with interior design degrees become licensed designers.