The heart of the program is the mastering of the three fields crucial to the future of design: Making, Structures, and Narratives. All students will explore and create within all three interdependent tracks.
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Making grounds design and designers. In the Making track, students investigate multiple dimensions of physical design practice, its processes, and the tools that inform it. In Making, we deepen the connection to craft and the materials, tools, manufacturing processes, and energy flows that underwrite it. We ground making in both the personal delight of the maker and the commercial, production, brand, and experiential possibilities that guide it.
Located on steps away from Products of Design is the new Visible Futures Lab. PoD students have priority access to the VFL; mix of a woodworking and machine shop, a rapid prototyping lab, an electronics lab, sewing & soft lab and gallery all in one space. The VLF is a state-of-the-art Maker Space featuring the latest tools for digital fabrication (see complete list of equipment here):
- Epilog laser cutters (Mini & Helix)
- Maker Bot Replicator 2 (x2)
- x2 Dimension uPrint SE’ (x2)
- Roland Wide-Format Printer & Vinyl Cutter
- ShopBot PRS Standard 9648 CNC Router w/ 4′ x 8′ bed
Design demands stories. At every step, the story of the design and its animating ideas must be made compelling through drawing, graphic representation, videography, history, writing, and point of view. In the Narratives track, students explore the storytelling dimension of design necessary throughout the design process—from idea to market.
Finally, the program is deliberate about cultivating the social conditions for success. Design is both personal and deeply collaborative. To prepare effective leaders, we help each student become confident in the three spheres that are vital to their success:
- Exploration (and sharing) of each student’s personal passion for design enterprise
- Expansion of the horizons of design through team-making, team-leading, and team-participation
- Connection of each student to the broader design network in New York and throughout the world to build the relationships that leverage multiple competencies and enable accomplished work.
Note that the majority of classes in the MFA Products of Design take place in the evening (typically 5 – 8pm), offering some flexibility to both students and faculty. That said, students are advised that the rigor of the course work requires a full-time commitment to the program.