Pursuing a Second Career in Interior Design

Q: I am 35 years old and a stay at home with two small children. My undergraduate degree was in political science. It was a degree that I never really used since I worked mostly in marketing and non-profit fundraising before my children were born. I am now most interested in interior design. Do I need to work on a second undergraduate degree? The expense of such a program would be a hardship for our family.

A: Congratulations on discovering what is interesting to you as the next step in your career. I am thrilled that you have earned an undergraduate degree.

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A second undergraduate degree would be both time-consuming and expensive. I would suggest that you research certificate programs in interior design. It is a more practical way of formally educating yourself and it will be quicker and less expensive to complete this type of program vs. completing a second undergraduate degree.

Several local colleges offer certificate programs in interior design. As an example, Massachusetts Bay Community College offers an interior design certificate program which includes a nine course curriculum. The Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) also offers an interior design certificate program also.

You could also gain valuable experience by beginning to work with an experienced interior designer or working in a retail shop where interior design services are offered. Not only will you gain experience, but you will add professional contacts to your rolodex.

Good luck in your new career interest!

by Pattie Hunt Sinacole, First Beacon Group LLC

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