Field trips to Material ConneXion, Sicis Official, and Ralph Pucci International showrooms; design workshops on material, color and architecture; access to New York School of Interior Design instructors: This summer, NYSID’s Pre-College Program introduced a crop of aspiring interior designers to the industry. Led by instructors Don Kossar, Francisco De Leon, Ana Peñalba Estebanez and Randi Halpern, the students also presented final projects to their fellow students, parents and teachers at a reception.
Ethan Lu, NYSID’s acting director of undergraduate programs and director of the MPS program in sustainable interior environments, is the coordinator of the Pre-College Program. He chatted with EAL about this year’s course highlights and the students:
Tell us about the Pre-College Program curriculum. What are the objectives?
The two-week Pre-College Program, which took place July 11 to 21, provided an introduction to the creative and rewarding world of interior design. Students visited the offices of celebrity interior designers and award-winning architects, visiting top showrooms and design resources all over New York City. Most importantly, students experienced a college-level design studio where they completed a portfolio-quality design project. Course content was delivered through a series of lectures and studio workshops.
What did students learn on the field trips?
This summer, students went to various showrooms, such as Material ConneXion, Sicis Official and Ralph Pucci International. They also visited residential firms, such as Drake/Anderson, Vicente Wolf and Studio Sofield; and contract firms, such as Perkins+Will, CookFox and Gensler. The showrooms provide exposure to the many different materials, fixtures and furnishings that can be specified by an interior designer. The field trips provide the students with a sense of what it’s like to work in a collaborative environment with other design colleagues.
Are the students all attending NYSID, or other schools, in the fall, or are they still in high school?
They are still in high school this fall, going into their junior or senior years. Unfortunately, we do not accept graduating seniors in the Pre-College Program. We recommend that graduating high school seniors take NYSID’s Introduction to Interior Design course.
What are some of the projects the students created?
Pre-College students are given the opportunity to design a 1,200-square-foot one-bedroom apartment in New York for a young professional in an artistic or creative field. Each student develops a client profile, and selects a style based on inspirational elements. The presentation requirements include a verbal description of the client’s profile, a concept and a presentation board. In addition to the one-bedroom apartment, students attend separate design workshops on ideation, drafting, pattern making, space planning, and color and material selection. Each workshop reinforces necessary skills developed throughout an interior designer’s career.