Lisa Fitzpatrick, president elect of the Washington Metro chapter of ASID was asked by students to create a list of the top 10 things not to do.
- Do not pass up networking opportunities. Whether you know someone who is going or not just go! The more you interact within the design community the more people you will get to know and you will become recognizable at future networking events, for future internships and future jobs.
- Do not wait to start building your portfolio. Start saving your work early on. Employers love to see progression which helps them determine whether you have the ability to grow and to adapt to their company.
- Do not just take classes within your department. Venture outside of the department; take art classes on campus or at various other venues; take graphic design glasses and take photography classes. An interior design education is what you make of it.
- Never stop learning. The design world is constantly changing not only regarding trends but technology changes almost daily. Stay ‘in the know’ by keeping up with ongoing research topics related to all aspects of design, from art to architecture to interior design.
- Do not put assignments off until the last minute. Yes we all procrastinate but look at how much you can accomplish during your last week before the assignment is due. Put the hours in earlier so you can master your floor plan then you can make the presentation even that much more outstanding. A good space plan is the foundation to your entire project; make that matter.
- Never stop sketching. The computer is a huge part of the design community but the programs grew from a need to enhance the drafting capabilities of the designer. The sketch itself in integral in the entire design process. The computer is a tool that can enhance our design but a sketch gives us the leverage to freely conceptualize our designs.
- Do not discredit your professors. They are there to guide you but you must do the work and expand as a student. Higher education is not easy and you must take what you can from each class; from each professor and from other design students and create your own path. Put time into your education and you will receive it back tenfold as you progress through.
- Do not dress down. Think about how you present yourself. Yes you will be exhausted at times during your progress and want to just throw on a pair of jeans and your comfy sweatshirt and head to school but do not do that on presentation day. Dress professionally. You are presenting your work to your peers, your professors and to outside critics who are your future. Dress the part.
- Do not just try to get by. Yes you could probably pass that class with minimal work and walk away with a C, but does that really give you anything for your future. Step up, read extra, sketch more and try to exceed even your own expectations.
- Most of all never give up! Practice makes perfect or almost perfect. If you get frustrated in school, in your internship or in your job search you must keep pushing forward. Grow as a designer and a person through experience. There is no perfect project – no perfect job but you can make you the best person you want. No one is perfect but what is perfect. Be happy and be passionate about what you do.
ASID Student Takeover Month
Alexandria, VA 22314 | © Fitzpatrick Design Studio