Little chance for a id student from south get a design job ?

Now I am studying in ID in southern aera. There are not so many companies which want to employ designers. Even finding an internship is not easy. Most students here do not work as a product designer after they graduate. Is it true that companies dislike students from south?

Portfolio is what matters. Unless you are unwilling to relocate, I don’t see what’s the difference.

I currently work for Peavey Electronics in Meridian, MS. I am probably one of a handful of working Industrial Designers in Mississippi. We are currently looking for another designer, and would absolutely consider a candidate from the south. Your portfolio and personality. are definitely what are going to get you hired though.

Ryobi (SC), Electrolux (SC), Michelin(SC), Kids 2 (GA), Philips(GA), SonyEricsson (NC), A bunch in Texas (Ignition, HP, etc) and a lot of small consultancies are in the south. Don’t waste your time trying to go huge unless youre pretty solid or go to UCinc. Just find somewhere you KNOW you’ll learn a lot and feel comfortable working at and go for it. I tried too hard to go for the large consultancies my junior year and lost chances with smaller consutancies or other corporations.

Oh and I got my degree from the south, and its your portfolio that should get you hired, not your school, ethnicity, heritage, where youre from, etc.

check out kimball- they are a furniture company in the south (famous for their organs/pianos- but they are branching out to things like office furniture )- i think southern indiana- anyway- i heard they are hiring designers. They were interested in me- but i did not want to relocate as i am in chicago. :peace

Portfolio is the key to any job you get. Contacts is the next.

Florida alone has almost 100 professional IDSA members. Obviously, not all designers are IDSA members…so that means that there are a fair amount of designers in Florida.

Florida companies that use design…ie-hire designers.

Quest Industries
Reflex Deisgn, Inc.
Caliper Design
Hands on
Sea-Doo ( Bombardier )
Laf Design
Office Depot
Blackhagen Design

and many others…do some searching…

The last Guest poster makes a good point, you need to get in touch with as many designers as possible. This biz is all about 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon…if you catch my drift. It’s nearly as important WHO you know, as WHAT you know.

Where Guest makes an error is where they infer that you can get good, solid references for opportunities from the listing of firms, a search methods limited to the internet, etc. Many of these are out-of-date or never intend to hire in the first place. While some states may be in better shape than others, Florida happens to be a rather poor example.

I wish I could say that the entire list that Guest posted employs designers, or may even have a need to hire them. It’s sad, but only about 4-5 of those listed have any interest in full-time design staff. The rest outsource to many of the consulting firms scattered about this great country of ours.

The important thing to realize is that we all run into ALOT of dead ends for every home run we hit…so you’re not alone. Don’t get discouraged, and don’t hesitate to cold call and talk to as many people as you can. The next job lead could come from anywhere.

As Nate mentioned, there is alot to be said for who you know. Get out, meet people.

Get online research, do research out in the world. Send out letters, emails, samplers. Yes, research here, but research in many places to compliment. You need to build a list of contacts…to find the one that will hire you.

Nate, I did not say to search here alone.
The more companies that hire designers, or contract designers…the better.

Think outside the South.

I too, went to a more ‘Southernly’ located school-- it wasn’t deep south-- but it certainly wasn’t in the NYC/Boston megapolis either. Product design opportunities were close to none in the college town, and the closest major metro areas held slim prospects. So, instead of looking for jobs only in the vicinity of my school or hometown, I looked in the major cities I was most interested in living and had a high percentage of design work. Boston, Chicago, NYC, but hell even look in Pittsburgh or Minneapolis. Just be prepared to move to where the jobs are.

It is usually who you know that gets you the job. Talk to anyone and everyone you know. Maybe they have a friend, relative, etc. Even here in Chicago it is hard to get a design job. After you graduate don’t be dissappointed if you don’t find anything for 1 year - 18 months. Just make sure to keep your skills up.

Do you know if Peavy electronics is still looking for an Industrial Designer? Are there other product design opprtunities in MS?


Fossel is in TX. There are plenty in NC.

Motorola in Florida is apparently looking for ppl…that’s what i was told at IDSA conference a couple of days ago.

Anyone knows any product design or design research opening in Mississippi??


i think the south, or more specifically, the southeast is a pretty hot market. i wish i could have stayed there.

As several people have pointed out, it is as much who you know as what you know. But, once you get the interview or contact, your skills are what gets you the job.

Regarding the south (Florida), I work for one of the firms in the list above. I maybe get 8-10 contacts per year. To me, that is not many, considering one school can easily graduate 20 students per year.

This is one of those fields where unfortunately you can’t really pick and chose where you live. You’re gonna have to be tied to areas where there is industry to support design. I wanted to stay within the Midwest myself, but now that I’m starting to feel some “urgency” in my current job search, I’m facing the fact that I’ll need to go where there’s a job.