top 10 reasons to study IAD at GW
10 The District of Columbia (DC) has been noted as the “hot new city” for young professionals. It was voted first place (tied with Seattle) by The Wall Street Journal in the article “The Next-Youth-Magnet Cities” (September 2009), and voted second to Houston by Forbes Magazine in the article “America’s Best Cities for Young Professionals” (June 2010). Rankings were based on affordability, income levels, and the current job market.
9 Then DC Mayor Adrian Fenty announced the Creative DC Action Agenda (June 2010), a strategy to strengthen the District’s creative economy. With more than 75,000 jobs generating $5 billion annually in income across the design, media, and additional creative/artistic fields, a study found that the DC’s creative sector is a major asset to the city’s economy. To quote Mayor Fenty, “We are truly a creative city, where creativity and talent combine to enliven our community and enhance our competitiveness.”
8 GW has the international stage. One of our professors presented her graduate institutional course’s winning design for a women’s clinic in Haiti to THE First Lady of Haiti and members of her staff during their visit to GW. The project has continued to involve with partnerships from the medical and architectural community. A GW kick-off reception at the Embassy of Haiti featured the Haitian Ambassador welcoming our faculty and students, and lending his support on the project.
7 DC has a new emphasis on design. Just check out examples of the cool hotels (W Hotel!), excellent restaurants (Proof!), fashion forward retail (Barneys Co-op!), and modern furniture stores (Design within Reach!).
6 Our location in the nation’s capital gives students access to urban resources such as significant architecture and interiors, top-notch museums and galleries, prestigious lecturers and events, the Washington Design Center, the United States Green Building Council (USGBC), and the American Society of Interior Designer (ASID) headquarters.
5 Graduate students receive a MFA (as opposed to an MA). An MFA is a “terminal” degree (considered the highest degree in the field), which allows teaching at the college level. Many universities require MA candidates to get a PhD to teach. There are many opportunities to teach at the college level; an MFA gives the graduate student the option to become a future educator.
4 Our program has access to the top architecture and interior design firms in DC, and we bring in these professionals for critiques, lectures, events, and our advisory board. Activities like these make connections and help our students get jobs. And with DC’s 5.9% unemployment rate—the lowest in the country—most of our students find full-time employment right after graduation.
3 Unlike an “art school,” GW has everything a typical college has to offer—sports, sororities/fraternities, etc. And with so many diverse disciplines offered by the University, there is an opportunity for cross collaboration among many different majors, programs, departments, and schools. Our students have worked on studio projects to design new spaces at GW; including the School of Media and Public Affairs, the Philosophy Department, and the laboratories in the Biology Department.
2 GW is the second-highest-ranked national university that offers interior design. It ranked 50th in the US News and World Report National Universities Rankings 2012.
1 GW is the only program in Washington DC that is accredited by The Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA). Programs that are accredited by CIDA have been carefully reviewed to establish that they adhere to a strict set of educational guidelines that are also accepted by the profession. See http://accredit-id.org/accredited-programs for a complete list of accredited programs by state.