I’ve just finished my second year in design school and will soon have to declare a concentration and before I start paying more tuition, I need to know what is the likely chance I’ll get hired as a female ID designer.
My interest lie in Interior Design (would like to design all aspects and accessories in ktichen and bathroom), some what in Architecture and I’ve also looked into Industrial Design as a possibility.
What is the ratio breakdown of female to male designers getting hired within Industrial Design? More males than females?
generally speaking, there are usually more males in most ID programs, so it would be logical if it where true that more males are being hired into the profession. But I doubt if it is because there is not a demand for female designers, in fact I would say the oposite is true, there seems to be a high demand for talented female ID’ers.
In the end this is all irrelevant though. It is usual best to do what you desire to do, and not base that decision on anything else. Talent will always find a place. Good luck with the decision!
go into ID… we need more female designers…wayyyy too many males in our industry…lots of really good firms have women designers to balance things off. As Yo said though, go with your guts, passion, whats feels right.
I’d put the ratio at least 5:1, male to female. I know some very talented and successful industrial designers who aren’t doing female shaving products, tableware, or Volvo auto interiors. I really don’t think there is much reason for this ratio, past a lack of interest in the college years, aided perhaps by a slight bit of gender discrimination on the part of some “old school” professors. My first boss was a woman and quite successful. And what the last guest wrote was also true - an all-male firm might want to get a female on staff to provide some perspective.
I read in ID magazine that the most recent freshman class of ID students (where and how they compiled the data, I don’t know) was 40% women. My own graduating class is probably 85% male and 15% female. The class just below mine is probably about 40%. I’ve met professionals who say that they are out looking for more women designers to hire, because they bring something different to the table. I imagine that despite those people, there are others who recruit through a Good Ole Boys club too.
IMO I think a female IDer ‘brings balance to the force’. If find that men see things differently than women when it comes to evaluating design. Not to generalize but that’s what I noticed. Our female designer here makes our team more rounded. To me I DO think its kind of a dumb question to ask about M/F ratios and female role in the industry.
EOE sounds familiar? regardless of sex, race, religion, etc. It should be based on fit and talent.
Stats show ID to be very close to 75% male-dominated, which is a shame. More women find their way in graphics or interiors and I have worked with some extremely talented, original and - something more men designers should be - very pragmatic and business-oriented.
Maybe it’s the “industrial” part that scares them off, maybe the “dirty” or messy nuts-and-bolts aspect, maybe the arrogance of many ID firms convinced they are closer to God than anyone, maybe the blind-sided crappy design education in most schools, maybe lots of other things.
Architectural offices doing furniture, for instance, are more open to women than most of industry which otherwise really follows typical hiring practices in engineering when it comes to sexual discrimination.
Hard to answer such a charged question with a straight face but, yes, slope’s steeper for women in traditional ID settings. Unfortunately.
Go for it only if there’s absolutely no other type of design you ever see yourself working in.
Are there people out there who still think this is a “guys” job? sure. Will there be people who ask you dumb questions? Of course. But they are outweighed by people who don’t care what parts you have as long as you can design.
example. Currently I am the first and only ID they’ve hired. They have a shop but it hasn’t been used for making models before. I went down to check it out and the shop master took one look at me in my suit and heels (I wasn’t planning on doing any model making, just checking it out) and said “you know how to use this stuff?”
I said yes. he said “oh really? Then name everything in here and what it’s for”
so I did. he shut up.
Do I recommend it? Really you should ask if you want to do it. If you want to be an industrial designer, then be an industrial designer. Don’t let sterotypes stop you because they’ll always be there.
I love the fact that atleast someone on this board pointed out that women ID’ers can be very professional…something that obviously our male co-workers need to work upon!
I am the youngest and the only female in our group of 5 Industrial designers. It’s a great learning experience and I definately help bring that balance and a different point of view that the team requires… and if you are from a different race/nationality and are multilingual…(like me)… all the more better!
Sometimes being in the minority can really work in your favor… so I say go for it!
I’m a foreigner AND a minority in this firm. I am not good looking, don’t drive a fancy car, no stellar client connections, and certainly don’t have a sparkling personality. But what I do have is the ability to sketch.