future industrial design graduates

Hi again. trying to get a discussion going around what the future id graduate needs from uni and what industry needs from the id grad?

Hi all,

I have been asked to take part in a focus/discussion group with the key topic/questions being:
1 What industry * wants from industrial design courses?
2 What skills do I.D graduates require in a modern digital industry?
3 The future I.D graduate

Has any body every been involved in something like the above and if so what do you see the key challenges facing Industrial design courses and its links with industry, in a world where the majority of products are manufacturing in low cost economies such as China and more so China’s periphery countries.

The future id (uk) graduate will not be able to run down to the manufacturing floor and see how something is produced, sure we can get knowledge from books, online and experienced designers and trips to the plant. At a fundamental level, the f/id graduate will need to greatly improve there material & process understanding to ensure there id services are to survive. This is a great thing because if you understand your material/process you understand how to make quality. Leaving this to just the manufacturing, mechanical & process eng is a recipe for cutting corners, they will just want to get the product off the line efficiently to ensure they are meeting there yield targets.

I am only forming opinions at the moment and known of this is fact or data driven and I can only speak as an in-house designer and all my experience has only been in-house and please excuse my ignorance for excluding free lance designers.

Look forward to your replies.