I’m sure you’ve heard enough of this kind of thing but I’m a mechanical engineering student interested in industrial design and I’d like some advice for how I should go about continuing my education.
So I’m a sophomore engineering major at Smith College. My mind is very oriented towards creative thinking and larger conceptualizing which I feel isn’t satisfied by just studying engineering. I recently became aware of the existence of industrial design and product design and I am extremely interested in pursuing those fields while retaining my engineering education.
So now I need to go about educating myself so I can get a job doing what I want eventually.
I’d really like to end up in a career where I can design things/products where my mechanical engineering degree would be useful. I’ve looked into design firms so I can get a summer job/some experience and I’d really like to know if there is a place for someone who works both as a mechanical engineer and an industrial designer (as opposed to these being hired separately)?
Beyond my eventual career path my current issue is how I can get from where I am to where I want to be. I’d like to eventually be a competitive applicant for a design firm but my current education options are rather limited. There are a few design classes at Smith and in the Five College system but most of them are more for sculpture and architecture. I’m currently taking as many courses as possible that address the design process of conceptualizing, modeling, fabricating etc so I can get an art minor and pursue design formally. I’ve also thought about applying to the Stanford masters program for product design after some relevant work experience. So my real question is; is it possible for me to apply to a design firm without much formal education in ID but a lot of projects? Should I transfer schools or try to work it out where I am/take a masters program for ID?