PLEASE HELP SUNY Purchase vs. Pratt

Hello there

So here is where we begin, a little about myself:

I just finished my undergrad studies for a BA in Economics. During my final year I have realized a career in industrial/product design is really what I want out of life. I don’t have much art of design experience, but what I do have is around 4 years experience in a UPS Store, most of which was spent on custom packaging/crating/shipping solutions and graphic design & printing/pre-press production. My father has also been influential, he is a tailor from the middle east and has his own business in custom menswear, and every weekend I would help him build things around the house. These house projects showed me he could have easily been a master carpenter as we built furniture, added a second story to my house, rigged a vegetable garden with irrigation and so many more projects. All those projects rubbed off on me :smiley:

I attended school at SUNY Purchase for my undergrad, and saw that they have a MFA in Visual Arts program. Although not directly an ID program, I have seen some very interesting works arise from the program. It is also described in the following directly from the schools site:

The MFA program in the School of Art+Design is a two-year, interdisciplinary graduate program in the visual arts. This small and highly selective program fosters the artistic, intellectual, and professional growth of each student through exposure to a variety of viewpoints represented by faculty, visiting artists, and critics, and through independent studio work and academic studies. Emphasis is placed on the development of originality, clarity, and studio discipline that will carry into the student’s professional career. The focus on independent studio work encourages discovery of individual forms of expression. This is accomplished through one-on-one meetings with faculty sponsors chosen each term, group critiques, and cross-disciplinary critiques with the MFA faculty.

Each graduate student is expected to produce a body of work during their two years, culminating in an MFA exhibition accompanied by a written thesis. For those interested in developing teaching skills and pedagogical approaches to art making, opportunities are available to assist in the teaching of undergraduate courses and, when appropriate, to develop and offer courses.

The extensive facilities of the school, including photography, video, and digital labs, a furniture-grade woodshop, metal shop, printmaking studios, all housed within the school’s 140,000 square foot building, are available to MFA students. In addition, each MFA student is assigned a semiprivate studio space. Thirty-five miles south of the campus, the vast art resources in New York City also play a crucial role in every student’s curricular and extracurricular studies.

My other choice was for Pratt’s Industrial Design program, which seems to take the cake between the two. Pratt’s program is well known among the community so I won’t waste text in describing what I am sure you all already know.

Now here is my dilemma, I live at home at am just 20 minutes from Purchase, and the tuition for the program is extremely affordable. I know the area, I would have access to work and a car. However it is not (how should I say this…) a reputable school for ID and I wonder about job prospectives after graduation.

With Pratt, it seems that they have a really great network to get a job after graduation. However the price tag is staggering, not to mention there would be a serious decline in the quality of living conditions. The cost of living in Brooklyn is also quite high by itself. Theres no doubt I would get an awesome education though. What I am hoping to find is a job where I could learn ID, and would help pay with grad school at Pratt (does that exist?)

I was hoping anyone reading this could give me their perspective, and tips on how I should begin my career/education. Or if anyone had a similar story to share.

Thanks for reading.

I don’t know of anyone coming out of the SUNY program as a designer. If go with Pratt. If you are going to spend time and money on making this happen, best to give yourself as much of an advantage as possible. SUNY might be cheaper, but if you don’t get the training and connections you need it won’t really matter.

Is there a reason those are your only 2 options? If Pratt is too expensive there are other reputable schools with lower price tags.

Syracuse and RIT would offer in-state tuition but are likely going to offer the undergraduate option.
How do you feel about a 2nd bachelors? (might be your best option)

SUNY Fashion Institute Of Technology.

Location: NYC Midtown

Tuition: $5000/Yr

Indutrial design program specializing in Toy Design.

The school also offers major in Exhibition Design.

Syracuse and RIT are both private institutions without in-state tuition like the SUNY schools, and Syracuse does not offer a masters in ID. Since I’m a NYer I wished there was an in state school with a real ID program. FIT has design programs but none are core Industrial Design curriculum.

I agree that a 4 year BA would probably be more beneficial than a 2 year MFA, that’s a bigger life decision to make.

The reason I mentioned out of state is the fact that schools like Virginia Tech are about half the price of most private schools like Pratt. Not to mention a significantly lower cost of living.