ACCD undergrad VS. any other US Grad ID program

Hi everyone-

First-this place is great. Personally-thanks to everyone who ceases to withhold their input and advice on ID school regardless of their current student or employment status. It is an invaluable position and resource for people like myself who are considering ID as an additional career/creativity outlet.

At this point, at 33, among all my creative endeavors and professional failures and successes I wold certainly stand by the creed that ‘you get out what you put in’ across the board. Also-from one of my most recent instructors at Prat Institute, the application process to school is a foray into what and how I want to pursue design as much as anything else.

I open with these notions because I’ve just heard back from all of my schools regarding entrance into their respective programs for Fall 2011. I’ve been offered entrance into the grad programs at CCA and SAIC. I’ve been rejected at Pratt, wait listed at RISD, and rejected from both the undergrad and grad programs at ACCD.

I got some good feedback from admissions at ACCD regarding my portfolio. So as it stands my current situation, (and here is where I want the feedback) is this: Is the undergrad Product Design program (and the apparent mind blowing portfolio,and professional preparation I would have after four years along with the internships) worth pursuing?

Now, and take this kindly, before the board chimes in with, ‘well if you want to do trans then yes, of course it’s worth it’ consider that currently what interests me in trans is not ‘cool cars’ but the evolution of human transport beyond four wheels, a chassis, and new car parts (even if they are made of mushroom fungi). Beyond that the DesignMatters concentration at ACCD has always been one of the attractive offerings at ACCD. In general, for design I’m not interested in strictly making, designing cool, new electronics regardless of the field. Items that are enabling micro finance (like those in use in Afghanistan) are the closest items that I would want to work on.

So-are there some other programs that I have missed in this first round of schools (D.School At Stanford?)? And is the undergrad Product Design program really all it’s cracked up to be and potentially worth 4 years, 4 years living in Pasadena, and 100K?

Thanks in advance for any feedback. And as I say about critiques, I’d rather have people tear and hack my work to pieces than sit in a silent room with my work and have my peers say things like ‘yeah, I like it’.

So ‘critique’ my view or current viewpoint please.

I have a number of questions and answers for you since I am in a similar boat.

Q—what CCA grad id program?

Q–What was your feedback from your portfolio review from Art Center?

Q–What specifically are you interested in with a design education? You’re all over the board. The more definitive you are in establishing what you do/don’t know and what you can/can’t get at a school will allow you to find a school that will foster the career you want.
i.e. technical skills you are lacking.
As interesting as design strategy and micro finance are, do you have the necessary skillset to properly develop your concepts in ideation in an advanced setting or studio?
What kind of portfolio are you interested in having after you graduate and how will that help or hinder you?

Answers to your questions
A–Art Center is 8 terms, roughly 2 years plus 2 terms. Most people don’t go straight through…so let’s say about 3-3.5yrs, depending on internships and breaks, because it is very draining. Currently, I am in the Art Center at Night Program and am enrolled at a community college to boost my port. I also have a design degree. At our age, debt is of little interest to me and I want as much scholarship money as I can get. I strongly urge you to enroll in the night classes b/c I believe it will increase your school choices and will help you technically and financially ( scholarship money).

A–Stanford’s DSchool is a 2 year design MFA or an MME degree…I’ll assume the MFA which is currently on moratorium and not taking applicants. You should visit schools and go to the grad shows. That will inform you more than any of us could. It is your time, your money, and your career.