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Industrial Design

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The variety of products and systems that fall within the potential scope of an industrial designer's work is extremely broad. Examples range from household appliances to aircraft interiors and from furniture to major electronics equipment, transportation vehicles, and myriad other product areas. Consequently, some industrial designers choose to specialize in particular area, e.g., automobile or furniture design, while others prefer to divide their efforts among several product areas that fall within their own design interests.

Industrial Design Department website

 

 

 

 

Sample of Related Skills

  • Create and develop concepts, designs, and specifications that optimize the value, function, convenience, safety, utility, and appearance of manufactured products and systems for the mutual benefit of both users and manufacturers of those products.
  • Understand Computer-Aided Design technologies utilized in the creation, dissemination, documentation, and preservation of design materials 
  • Demonstrate a working knowledge of media, technologies and equipment applicable to their area of emphasis. This includes environmentally responsible practice 
  • Integrate skills in studio practice, theory, analysis, media and technology to address a variety of design problems, independently and in collaboration with others 
  • Demonstrate through public exhibition the capability to produce work that embodies a coherent set of artistic and intellectual goals 

 

Popular Career Paths

Industrial and Commercial Design: Involves designing manufactured products such as cars, home appliances, and toys

Freelance: Entails utilizing one’s network and resources to contract with individuals, companies, or organizations to complete project-based assignments


Jobs to Consider

Advertising Director

Clothing/Textile Technologist

Color Technologist

Exhibition Designer

 

Furniture Designer

Graphic Designer

Industrial/Product Designer

Interior and Spatial Designer

 

Purchasing manager

Theatre/Television/Film Production Designer

 

 

 


Places to Seek Employment

Engineering Firms

Large Corporations

Manufacturing Companies

State, Local, & Federal Agencies

Universities and Colleges

 

View specific employers by state.


Employment Strategies

  1. Consider starting your own business, doing freelance work, or working several part-time positions at once.
  2. Gain direct experience within the areas that interest you most through research projects, independent study, internships, part-time jobs, student organization involvement, or volunteering.
  3. Register for KU Career Connections and subscribe to the Internship Newsletter to receive automated weekly emails with specific internship information.
  4. Consider joining a professional organization related to your area of interest in visual arts/design, and if possible, attend local and or regional conferences to network with professionals working in your field.
  5. Earn a minor or take additional coursework outside your major when relevant.
  6. Conduct informational discussions with individuals from industry.
  7. Attend the University Career Fair each spring.
  8. Engage in personal networking to enhance employment prospects.
  9. Start early on developing your professional portfolio.
  10. Develop skills including: customer focus, problem solving, self-direction, team orientation, analysis, communication skills, critical thinking, and high ethical standards.

Job and Internship Search Resources

  • Americans for the ARTS - job bank with careers in the arts
  • Apparel Executives - job listings for both internships and full-time positions in the apparel and fashion industries
  • ArtistsRegister.com - list of excellent opportunities for competitions, internships, exhibitions, festivals and fairs, film, and public art
  • ArtSchools - online resource for portfolio preparation for college and employment opportunities
  • Creative Hotlist - online search engine geared towards career development in the art fields
  • Coroflot - online resource for the "creative world at work" featuring job listings board, portfolio advice, groups, and general career advice 
  • Design Addict - resource featuring over 5000 links in all fields regarding visual arts/design such as museums, collectors, associations, and artists
  • Incredible @rt Department - national job listings board arranged by state which offers a variety of art related jobs
  • National Art Education Association - premier electronic recruitment resource for the profession, includes job listings
  • theCreativeloft - job listings for individuals in creative industries
  • Upwork - resource to connect freelancers with job opportunities

The quick link for this page is career.ku.edu/industrialdesign.

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