How to Find an Interior Designer Course near Woolwich Maine
Once you have decided to enroll in an interior design college near Woolwich ME, it’s time to start the process of choosing a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing commercial or residential interiors, it’s essential that you obtain the right training to put your talents to work. And since some states do mandate that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you could need preparation to pass a licensing exam as well. So it’s vital that you carry out the proper research in order to evaluate and compare each program that you are considering prior to making your ultimate decision. But exactly where do you begin? Many future students will begin their research by looking for interior design schools near their home and then comparing tuition costs. While cost and location are relevant variables when making a determination, they are by no means the only ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation must be taken into account also. We will address those issues and other vital questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are looking at later in this article. But before we do, let’s cover a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and class alternatives are available.
Interior Design vs Interior Decoration
Some people confuse interior decoration for interior design and vice versa. The primary difference between them is the amount of education required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a talent for decorating interior spaces. However, doing business as an interior designer necessitates formal training and in numerous states one must have an accredited Bachelor’s or Associate Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are educated to make work or residential spaces attractive as well as functional. On many occasions they may collaborate with building engineers and architects. There are 2 general areas that an interior designer in Woolwich ME can specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers typically work on new construction and existing homes. They can design essentially any area of the home, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they may specialize in designing one particular room, for example bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Designing. When working on commercial or public spaces, designers normally concentrate predominantly on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but pay attention to both. As an example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are areas where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for hospitals and banks might focus more on functionality over looks as the primary consideration.
There are numerous areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer must learn, for example color schemes, lighting, furniture and acoustics. They need to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to create their visions. From choosing carpeting and wall paper to integrating Feng shui principles, Woolwich ME interior designers employ a wide variety of skills that contribute to their final designs.
Interior Design Training Programs
There are 4 degree options offered in interior design to receive the training required to launch your new profession in Woolwich ME. Your choice will undoubtedly be influenced by your career goals in addition to the time and money that you have budgeted to devote to your education. But no matter which degree program you decide to enroll in, be sure to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is needed in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in a number of states. More will be covered on additional accreditation benefits later. Below are brief explanations of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees supply the minimum level of education needed to enter the field. They take about 2 years to complete and programs are offered at numerous Maine vocational schools and community colleges. Graduates can typically qualify for entry level positions as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are 4 year programs that supply more extensive training than the Associate Degree. They deal with the technical and creative aspects of the business required to become a designer. They are the minimum credential needed by a college graduate in order to secure an entry level position as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These 2 year programs furnish advanced design training after attaining the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide choices in specialized majors in general areas such as business offices or residential bathrooms. Many students enroll to enhance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate degrees are mostly for those professionals who wish to teach interior design at a university or college level. The degree programs differ in length but are generally completed in three to five years.
To work professionally and adopt the title of “Interior Designer”, many states require that graduates of accredited degree programs become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of professional experience may be called for before an applicant can take the licensing exam.
Interior Design Online Classes
For individuals who wish to study in the convenience of their Woolwich ME homes, there are online accredited interior design schools. Attending classes online can be a great option for those students that are employed or have hectic schedules that make going to classes on campus challenging. Classes can instead be accessed on a home computer or laptop when convenient for the student. For many students online programs may be the only alternative if no interior design programs are within driving distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more traditional options. Added costs for such things as commuting or study materials may be reduced or eliminated as well. Just make sure that the college you choose is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online schools may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online education. If you have the discipline to acquire your degree without the structure of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design program may be the perfect option for you.
Questions to Ask Interior Design Colleges
Once you have decided on the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can begin the task of analyzing your school options. Location will be a critical issue, particularly if the college must be within driving distance from your Woolwich ME residence. Naturally if you have decided on attending an online school, or are prepared to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The expense for tuition will decrease your options as well. But selecting the least expensive college or the one that is closest to your house are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other factors that you need to look at as well, such as the reputation and accreditation of the college. Below are a few questions that you may want to address with the colleges you are considering to get those answers in addition to others in order to help you assess and ultimately choose the right degree program.
Is the Interior Design School Accredited? It’s imperative to confirm that the interior designer program and school that you enroll in has earned accreditation from either a national or regional organization. One of the most respected in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive evaluation of their teachers and programs. Just verify that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Not only will it help establish that the reputation of the school and the quality of the training are outstanding, it might also help when obtaining financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Woolwich ME employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level jobs.
Does the Program Prepare you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, some States do mandate that interior designers get licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam as well as a degree from an accredited school. And in some of those States requiring licensing, 2 or more years of occupational experience may be required as well. Therefore besides furnishing an excellent education, the Woolwich ME program you select should also furnish the appropriate training to pass the NCIDQ examination and satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Maine or the State where you will be employed.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and earned your interior design certification, you will no doubt need some support in finding your first job. Ask the colleges that you are reviewing if they have a job placement program. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is an excellent indication that the college and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design field and its graduates are in demand. It may also indicate that the college has a large network of Woolwich ME business contacts where they can place students to secure internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Provided? Get in touch with the financial assistance offices for the Woolwich ME colleges you are looking at and ask what kind of assistance they offer. Many of interior design schools offer financial assistance to their new students. Some schools provide partial scholarships and others provide help in obtaining grants or federal student loans. It must be stressed again that enrolling in an accredited college is imperative for qualification in most cases. In some cases a school that has a higher tuition may effectively be cheaper than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial assistance.
How Small are the Classes? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Ask the Woolwich ME programs you are looking at what their typical teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Woolwich home, go to the college and attend a few classes. While there talk with a few students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching philosophies are and what their credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Finally, make certain that the interior design school you select offers classes the fit your active schedule. This is especially important if you will continue working while going to school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Woolwich ME, verify that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, verify that is an alternative also. Finally, find out what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Considering Attending Interior Design School in Woolwich ME?
Woolwich is a town in Sagadahoc County, Maine, United States. The population was 3,072 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Portland–South Portland–Biddeford, Maine metropolitan statistical area. Woolwich is a suburb of the city of Bath located on the opposite shore of Merrymeeting Bay.
Called Nequasset after Nequasset lake by Abenaki Indians, it was first settled in 1638 by Edward Bateman and John Brown. They would purchase the land in 1639 from the sachem Mowhotiwormet, commonly known as Chief Robinhood, who lived near Nequasset Falls. At Day's Ferry on the Kennebec River, Richard Hammond operated a fortified trading post. His household of 16, including servants, workmen and stepchildren, conducted a lucrative fur trade with the Indians. But in the first blow of King Philip's War in the area, on the evening of August 13, 1676, warriors ingratiated themselves into the stockaded trading post, then killed the elderly Hammond and his stepson as they returned for the night. Others were either slain and scalped or taken into captivity. Buildings were looted and burned, and the cattle slain.
Nequasset was attacked during King William's War, when inhabitants were again massacred or forced to abandon their homes. It was assailed again in 1723 during Dummer's War, when the Norridgewocks and their 250 Indian allies from Canada, incited by the French missionary Sebastien Rale, burned dwellings and killed cattle. Following Governor William Dummer's peace treaty of 1725, resettlement would be slow. During the French and Indian War, on June 9, 1758, Indians raided the village, killing members of the Preble family and taking others prisoner to Quebec. This incident became known as the last conflict on the Kennebec River.
Choose the Right Interior Design School near Woolwich ME
Picking the ideal interior design school is an important initial step toward launching your career in this artistic and rewarding profession. Searching for a college where you will obtain your education and develop your talents in a specific area of study is a daunting job no matter what major you have decided on. As with any endeavor to acquire an advanced education, there are a number of factors to consider before enrolling in a course, program or school. At a minimum, confirm that the design college and program are both accredited and highly respected in the field. However it is still important that you conduct your due diligence research. By doing so and following the remaining recommendations provided in this article, you will be able to effectively evaluate and compare schools so that you can make the appropriate ultimate selection. And with superior training and your determination to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Woolwich ME.
More Awesome Cities in Maine