Design schools for poor people

So… I’m pretty sure I’ve read every single post in this thread BUT I would like some help in compiling a list of the right schools for me from current students, designers, professors etc.
I would be going back for a seconds bachelors and do not have an art/design background. I am from the NYC area so of.course will be looking at Pratt and Parsons but wanted a few other alternatives. I’m looking to keep costs down, don’t really want to go someplace cold but suitable area whereas I could have decent access to internship opportunities. I don’t have a specific ID area I am interested in but love the work of firms like Fuseproject, BMW Designworks, Puresang.

You might want to look at some state schools- they tend to be cheaper than art schools. I go to Cincinnati as an out of state student, and that’s still cheaper than nearly every other design school. If you can get in state tuition, it becomes even more affordable. You should also check out Virginia Tech and RIT (it’s private, but much more affordable than most private schools) which I’ve seen pretty good work from. On the West coast, check out San Jose State, Western Washington University, and maybe University of Washington (UW is a pretty young program though- I’d recommend it if you’re really into interaction design). Also, I think Mass Art in Boston is a state school (the only public art school in the country), so that might be more affordable as well. Other public schools that have ID departments- U Michigan, Purdue, Cal State Long Beach, Arizona State University, Ohio State U, NC State (this one’s really good actually), Auburn U (so is this one).

Those are off the top of my head-

good luck!

The universities in Scandinavia are well known for offering free tuition if you’re selected… I had a friend do a free Masters Degree in Stockholm (wasn’t design, but I think it works for that too)

There’s design schools in Umea and Gothenburg… maybe more

Not anymore for international students. Guess taxpayers got tired of paying education for people who leave the country the second they graduate :wink:

@Ineo Thanks. I’ve been leaning towards the west coast cause I have a friend out there who loves it but I wouldn’t really know until I visit the campuses. I keep hearing great things about UCincinnati. How is the Cincinnati area BTW?
I checked out your portfolio and see you do a mix of Industrial and Interaction Design. I have been considering getting into both those areas but not sure I could swing it. How is it working out for you?

This only applies to citizens outside of the European Union.

Yeah- if you’re about to drop anywhere from 40k-100k on an education, a tour of the campuses you are considering is an absolute must. Every ID department has a unique character, and what’s more important than location is how much that character fits you (you will be spending an awful lot of time in your studio… In fact, that’s a character driver in itself- if you visit a school and find not many students working in their studios make a note of that, as I think that in itself says a lot about how driven students are).

Something I have realized, at least for me, is that ID education is all about how much you put into it. If you work your arse off for four years, (and I mean really work your ass off), great things will come your way. ID is very learn-able, and every challenge you face in school can be overcome just by putting a lot of time into it (sketching skills, understanding manufacturing, etc.). You can work incredibly hard at every school, and end up with a similar skill set (Probably with a slightly different approach to design)- it’s the opportunities each school offers that should make you want to go to one over another.

UC is fantastic (and you keep hearing about it) because it has a TON of opportunities that push students to excel and work even harder in school. In my case for example, my first two “co-ops” were in the NY area (ok… new jersey) at a small design firm (insync design) started by a bunch of ex-henry dreyfuss associate guys. I learned a ton about explaining ideas through sketches and understanding mechanisms and production methods (I’m still by no means a master of any of those topics…). My third co-op was in Seattle with Carbon Design Group, where I learned a lot more about presenting ideas to clients, how to present myself, and doing design research, on top of gaining a lot of cool engineering and manufacturing knowledge. Now I am interning with a design firm in Antwerp, Belgium (Enthoven Associates Design Consultants) working on public transportation, user interfaces, and other products. My internship is over in October, after which I will be studying abroad at the University of Wuppertal in Germany for 6 months. I will then have about a month and a half to travel around the EU before flying out of Paris in May to return to a semester of school at UC, and then to find my final internship, go back to school in the spring, and graduate.

I’m telling you this because if I didn’t go to UC, I definitely wouldn’t have had any of these opportunities to learn and grow. The Cincinnati area isn’t the most exciting for someone like me (especially since I don’t have a car, and only recently turned 21… so I’m heavily biased to not having access to a lot of what the city has to offer), but it definitely was a great way for me to better understand a different part of America (I’m from LA and never thought I would end up in Ohio…) and explore this region a bit. \

In terms of ID and IxD- my portfolio is kind of old. After hanging out with students at UWashington during my last internship out in Seattle, I’m definitely removing “interaction design” from my cover- I’m by no means anywhere near as qualified to call myself that as someone who’s taken courses in it (unless I put a newer, better IxD project in there… we’ll see). It was definitely something I was interested in, but I’m more about the convergence of IxD and ID and want to work on proejcts where the UI and ID are designed in tandem… if that makes sense. that’s my idealistic student goal at least for right now.

Sorry for the long reply that kind of meanders all of the place… I’m not sure if I answered your questions or not but let me know if there’s anything else I can add to help.

University of Houston is super super cheap, probably cheaper than any other school you go to.

Thanks for all the responses! They have been really helpful! I’m really hoping to avoid more students loans and find a school that has a really good network throughout the design community.

@Ineo I sent you a PM bc I’m afraid my reply is just as long if not longer…

oh whoa- i totally didn’t see the PM. sorry about that :slight_smile: