Whether you are in high school or college what comes to mind when you think of school? Repetition, memorization, testing, studying, boredom? Similar unengaging words may come to mind. Having spent 6 years in design school, the first word I think of is “fun”.
Including architecture, industrial design, and interior design, Fletcher Hall is home to the School of Architecture and Design (SOAD) at ULL. Unlike the rest of campus, little is known about what students are doing here.
However, one thing that is known about Fletcher Hall is students are occupying the building all night. This doesn’t sound fun at a glance, but it is what we do in there that makes it fun:
We do not take tests.
You may be thinking, how is that possible? In a design major, you are graded instead by the honest effort and the amount of thought put into your work and ideas.
We do have daily projects due which are not typical of a traditional major. And by projects I mean…
We get to draw, paint, build, and break things.
We sit down for hours envisioning and drawing what it is we want others to see in our ideas. Then we build models to show the ideas in physical form.
Give a creative person something creative to do and the result of any project becomes rewarding.
Students direct their own projects.
The professors decide the due dates and the general requirements. Then from there the design students take care of the project. We make the major decisions on the projects. The professors challenge the designs and decisions you make to get you to look at what can improve your project.
You learn from everyone, not just professors.
When students talk about their projects to the class, their peers are able to learn from what others have discovered.
We discuss in each class what we were successful at and where we need improvement.
You get to build real relationships with many other students in your school.
Design classes are generally all in the same building. Design students spend 50 hours a week working next to the same people for 4-6 years. Whether having fun or being stressed, the atmosphere is great for making friends with other people.
Nevertheless, the best part about being a design major is…
I rarely feel like I am doing work.
No matter the many hours I put into my projects, at the end of the day the accomplishment I feel designing tops everything.