Interior Design College of Design

Careers in Interior Design

Careers in Interior Design

Interior Designers are responsible for creating spaces that protect people’s health and safety and improve their well-being.  Students in the interior design program are educated via our CIDA-accredited program to identify and solve problems related to humans and their use of interior space.

Areas for employment:

  • Multi-Disciplinary Firms (architecture, interior design, engineering)

  • Interior Design Firms

  • Sole Practitioner Firms

  • Sales and Marketing Representatives for Manufacturers

  • Furniture Dealership or Showrooms

  • Corporations (“in-house” design)


Project specialties:

  • Healthcare

  • Office

  • Residential

  • Hospitality

  • Retail/Restaurant

  • Government/Civic/Municipal

  • Education

  • Facility Planning and Management

  • Criminal Justice (Courts and Jails)

  • Restoration and Adaptive Reuse


Skills for Success

Interior design is a service profession. Interior designer’s success will depend on their design ability, understanding of professional practice and ethics, and an ability to satisfy clients, whether individuals, companies, or governmental entities, among others. Thus, they must possess three important skill sets to complement and support the knowledge gained during their interior design degree program about the interaction between design and human behavior. The skill sets include creative and technical skills, interpersonal skills, and management skills:

  • Interior designers must know how to plan a space and how to communicate that plan visually and verbally, so that it can be conveyed to the client. They must also be knowledgeable about the materials and products that will be used to create and furnish the space, and about how texture, color, lighting and other factors combine and interact to give a space its "feel" or "look." In addition, they must understand the building systems requirements of their plans, health and safety issues, building codes, energy codes, and many other technical aspects.

  • Interior designers must be comfortable working with many kinds of people. They must communicate clearly and effectively, as well as be attentive listeners. Because they often must work collaboratively with architects, contractors, and other service providers, designers need to be both good team leaders and good team players. They must be willing to negotiate and mediate when necessary to resolve problems.

  • Interior designers must have excellent time and project management skills, since they frequently work on more than one project at a time, under demanding deadlines, while marketing for new projects or clients. They must be able to develop and execute business plans in order to protect and grow their practices. They need to know how to market themselves to clients, to create informative and persuasive proposals and presentations, and to maintain good client relationships. (based on ASID.org)

 

Career and Internship Services provides additional information on position titles, employees, salary and employment statistics.

 

Interior Design Resource List

Below you will find our top picks for professional association and job search sites for this industry.

 

Career & Internship Services

Email: careerhelp@umn.edu

Phone: 612-624-2710

 

St. Paul:

198 McNeal Hall

1985 Buford Avenue
St. Paul, MN 55108

 

Minneapolis:

411 Bruinks Hall

222 Pleasant Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

 

Contact Information

College of Design

Saint Paul Offices

32 McNeal Hall, 1985 Buford Ave, St. Paul, MN 55108

P: 612-626-9068 | F: 612-625-1922

[directions and maps]

Minneapolis Offices

101 Rapson Hall, 89 Church St SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455

P: 612-626-9068 | F: 612-625-7525

[directions and maps]

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