Could I actually do Industrial Design?

I’m a sophomore in high school and now have over a year of experience using Autodesk Inventor and sketching. I’ve made about fifty parts, both computer representations of real life and original designs, for my FIRST Tech Challenge robotics team, such as this one:

I know that I have plenty of time to decide a major for when I go to college, but I keep getting asked what I want to major in at competitions and expos and I’ve become tired of saying that I don’t know. The four things I love are speaking Spanish (which I want to minor in), writing (I refuse to get an English degree because I don’t want to have to teach and grade papers), FIRST robotics (it’s all volunteering, no major here), and CAD. And I’ve started to wonder if I could actually have a career in the final thing.
In a few weeks, I’ll be getting a new computer capable of running Inventor, and once I do I’m going to sketch out ideas for random things (#1 being a battle axe/bottle opener) and CAD them and see what happens. I can envision objects in 3D now, along with precisely how to CAD them.
I know that CAD does not equal design, and I do have a basic knowledge of and some experience in sketching. But CAD is my favorite. I find an exhilarating calm in making the parts and assemblies, and if I had a job doing that all day it wouldn’t be work. Would industrial design be the best educational avenue to take for that to happen? And could I actually do it?

Of course you COULD actually do ID, but would you enjoy ID for the next 40+ years is a more suitable question… :wink:

From a very rudimentary explanation of what you’re in to at the moment I would say you’re leaning more towards the engineering spectrum of our industry than hardcore ID.

To give a better answer, can I ask what do you enjoy more: the way things look (form etc) OR the way things work (mechanics etc)?

On a side note I think it might be worth your while learning either Solidworks or Pro Engineer (think its called Creo now?). Those are more widely used in industry than Inventor. If you get proficient at either of those before even leaving high school then you’ll be worlds ahead when you graduate college in half a decades time…

I enjoy some parts of engineering, but I strangely don’t have the desire to be an engineer, despite having been in a robotics program for seven years. Even if I did have that desire, I’m too bad at math tests to do well in an engineering degree.

And, in regards to your second question, a bit of both. I do enjoy the way things look, but more so how they are put together. I don’t really have the brain for mechanics. The main reason I don’t do building on my team is that we have to decide how the design works and then build that before even considering how we are going to make it look nice. (I’m not sure how to put it into words beyond that. It makes more sense in my head than it does here)