Art Center College of Design (ACCD) held a degree show for its 8th term graduating students at the end of last year. The work varied both in concept and typology and was a strong show from a school that has built a reputation as being one of the preeminent design schools in the world.
One of the reason ACCD’s transportation design course has proved so successful over the years is because of the administration’s decision to keep the course small. For every term, only seven or eight graduates gain a diploma from the acclaimed program. This is more than half the size of some other undergraduate transportation design programs, which allows tutors more time to spend guiding these young creatives.
ACCD’s transportation design program is also fairly self-sustained, with everything from clay milling to a paint shop at the students disposal. But the course’s biggest asset is the staff. Taught by designers like Dave Marek, Jae Min, and Jason Hill (just to name a few), Art Center students benefit from learning from people that are actively working in the industry and, in the case of Dave and Jae, at the director level.
The show itself is well laid out, with students not only given the opportunity to showcase multiple examples of the work they’ve undertaken during their time at ACCD but also allowing for the projects to be placed on an elevated stand away from the walls. This provides visitors unobstructed viewing of the projects from all angles.
ACCD’s is also one of the few transportation design courses I know of where students are actively engaged in creating the package for their concept. Besides developing their sketching and digital techniques, the students also develop an understanding of the fundamentals (and constraints) of packaging, which will give them a leg up on other candidates when the job search begins.