How to Find the Right Interior Design School West Bend 53090
Once you have decided to enroll in an interior design degree program near West Bend WI, it’s time to start the process of picking a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing residential or commercial interiors, it’s essential that you receive the right training to put your talents to work. And since some states do mandate that interior designers become licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need preparation to pass a licensing examination as well. So it’s very important that you do the appropriate research so that you can evaluate and compare each program that you are looking at before you make your final choice. But exactly where do you begin? Many potential students will launch their research by searching for interior design schools near their home and then comparing tuition costs. While cost and location are relevant factors when making a determination, they should not be the only ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation must be taken into account as well. We will cover those issues and other important questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are interested in later in this article. But first, let’s talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and training choices are available.
Interior Decoration and Interior Design
Many people mistake interior decoration for interior design and vice versa. The key difference between them is the amount of education required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior areas. On the other hand, working as an interior designer necessitates a formal education and in many states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor’s Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are trained to make work or living spaces attractive as well as functional. On many occasions they may collaborate with building engineers and architects. There are 2 general areas that an interior designer in West Bend WI can specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers typically work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design essentially any room of a house, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they can specialize in designing one specific room, such as bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Design. When dealing with public or commercial spaces, designers often focus predominantly on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but pay attention to both. For example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are areas where aesthetics may be emphasized over function. Designs for banks and hospitals may focus more on functionality over looks as the main consideration.
There are numerous areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer must learn, including color schemes, lighting, furniture and acoustics. Designers need to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From selecting wall paper and carpeting to incorporating Feng shui concepts, West Bend WI interior designers employ a wide range of skills that help bring about their ultimate creations.
Interior Design Training Programs
There are four degree alternatives offered in interior design to get the training necessary to begin your new career in West Bend WI. Your choice will undoubtedly be influenced by your career goals in addition to the money and time that you have to invest in your education. But no matter which degree program you choose to enroll in, be sure to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam required in some states. More will be discussed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Below are short descriptions of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Associate degrees in interior design supply the minimum level of training required to enter the field. They take approximately two years to finish and programs are available at many Wisconsin vocational schools and community colleges. Graduates can commonly obtain entry level positions as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are 4 year programs that provide more comprehensive training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative aspects of the business required to become a designer. They are the minimum degree needed by a college graduate in order to secure an entry level position as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These 2 year programs furnish advanced training in design after acquiring the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide options in specialty majors in general areas such as business offices or residential bathrooms. Many students enroll to improve their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctoral degrees are primarily for those professionals who wish to teach interior design at a university or college level. The degree programs differ in length but are typically completed in 3 to 5 years.
To work professionally and use the title of “Interior Designer”, many states require that graduates of accredited degree programs become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be called for before an applicant can take the licensing exam.
Online Interior Design Colleges
For those who wish to study in the comfort of their West Bend WI homes, there are accredited online interior design classes. Attending classes online can be a great option for those students that are employed or have hectic schedules that make going to classes on campus challenging. Classes can instead be attended on a home computer or laptop when convenient for the student. For some students online colleges may be the only option if no interior design programs are within commuting distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more traditional options. Added expenses for such things as commuting or study materials may be minimized or eliminated also. Just make sure that the school you enroll in is accredited by a highly regarded accrediting agency, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online programs may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online learning. If you have the discipline to acquire your degree without the confines of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design school may be the perfect alternative for you.
What to Ask Interior Design Schools
After you have chosen the interior designer degree that you would like to earn, you can begin the task of assessing your college options. Location will be an important issue, particularly if the school must be within driving distance from your West Bend WI home. Naturally if you are interested in attending a school online, or are prepared to move to attend classes, then location may not be a qualification. The cost of tuition will limit your choices as well. But choosing the least expensive school or the one that is closest to home are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other factors that you need to look at as well, including the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a few questions that you may want to address with the colleges you are considering to get those answers as well as others to help you examine and ultimately select the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Design Degree Program Accredited? It’s necessary to confirm that the interior designer program and school that you select has been accredited by either a national or regional agency. One of the most respected in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges receiving accreditation from the NASAD have undergone a rigorous evaluation of their teachers and programs. Just verify that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Not only will it help establish that the reputation of the school and the quality of the training are exceptional, it might also help when obtaining financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of West Bend WI employers will only employ graduates of accredited colleges for entry level positions.
Does the College Prepare you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several States do require that interior designers get licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam in addition to a degree from an accredited program. And in some of those States calling for licensing, 2 or more years of professional experience may be required also. So besides furnishing an outstanding education, the West Bend WI school you choose should also provide the suitable education to pass the NCIDQ examination and fulfill the minimum licensing requirements for Wisconsin or the State where you will be employed.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and earned your interior design certification, you will probably need some assistance in finding your first position. Ask the programs that you are looking at if they have a job placement program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A high rate is an excellent sign that the school and its programs are held in high regard within the interior design profession and its graduates are sought after. It might also indicate that the school has a sizable network of West Bend WI business connections where they can place students to secure internships or jobs after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Available? Contact the financial assistance offices for the West Bend WI schools you are evaluating and find out what kind of support they provide. A number of interior designer programs offer financial aid to their incoming students. Certain colleges offer partial scholarships while others provide help in acquiring federal student loans or grants. Again it must be stressed that choosing an accredited school is imperative for qualification in most cases. Often a school that has a higher tuition may effectively be less expensive than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Big are the Classes? Small classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you may receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Ask the West Bend WI programs you are looking at what their average teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your West Bend home, visit the campus and monitor a few classes. While there talk with some students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching approaches are and what their credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, make certain that the interior design college you choose provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially significant if you will continue working while attending school. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near West Bend WI, confirm that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, verify that is an alternative also. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to work, sickness or family obligations.
Enrolling in an Interior Design School near West Bend WI?
Perhaps you are considering attending an interior design degree program in the West Bend Wisconsin area. If so, you may find the following information about the location of your new school campus interesting and informative.
West Bend, Wisconsin
In 1845, the Wisconsin Territorial Legislature authorized the building of a road to connect Fond du Lac and Milwaukee. Byron Kilbourn, one of the highway commissioners, and Jasper Vliet, a surveyor, were put in charge of determining the route the road would take and of identifying a good halfway point for travelers. The path they chose is now U.S. Route 45 and the rest stop is present-day West Bend. Because many people used the resting place, it evolved into a popular area. The Milwaukee River running through the town eventually played a major role in the city's history. It was because of the western bend in the river that West Bend got its name. The river also produced enough energy to power saw mills and gristmills. Early buildings included Holy Angels Catholic Church, built in 1852 at the corner of Hickory and 7th. In 1866 this building was converted into a school, and a new church was built at Elm and 7th under the direction of Reverend Johann Baptist Reindl (1827–1891); the building is now Trinity Lutheran Church. The railroad arrived in 1873, bringing with it more settlers and industrialization. At this time, West Bend saw a growth spurt, and in 1885 the city officially became an incorporated Wisconsin community.
In 1845 early settler Barton Salisbury, while on a surveying trip up the Milwaukee River, found a rapids that he believed would be a good source of power for a sawmill. He built a log hut on the west side of the river and the village of Barton was born. On November 1, 1961, the city of West Bend annexed the Village of Barton.
In 2009, a controversy arose after a local couple complained to the West Bend Community Memorial Library about the presence of "sexually explicit books" and "books for youth on homosexuality" in the young adult section of the library. A petition called on the library to label the identified books as explicit, move them to the adult section of the library, install Internet content filters on the library's computers, and "adopt a policy to attain balance in the viewpoints of selections (both affirming and opposing) that the libraries carry in issues sufficiently controversial within the West Bend community (i.e. homosexuality). Specifically, we request faith-based and/or ex-gay books affirming traditional heterosexual perspectives be added to the library."
Select the Best Interior Design School near West Bend WI
Choosing the right interior designer college is a crucial first step toward starting your career in this artistic and rewarding occupation. Finding a school where you will obtain your training and cultivate your skills in a particular area of study is a challenging task no matter what field you have selected. As with any undertaking to acquire a higher education, there are several points to think about before choosing a program, course or school. At a minimum, verify that the program and design college are both accredited and highly esteemed in the profession. You originally came upon this website because you had an initial interest in Interior Design Courses. However it is still important that you perform your due diligence research. By doing so and following the remaining recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to properly assess and compare interior design programs so that you can make the right final selection. And with excellent training and your determination to succeed, you can reach your goal of becoming an interior designer in West Bend WI.
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