Popular Careers

Career Development

Career development resources for aspiring professionals.

Career Change Center

Career change guides, tutorials and resources for professionals in transition.

Job Search Resources

Job search resources, websites, guides and directories for job seekers.


Career and Education Opportunities for Industrial Designers in Fort Wayne, Indiana

Industrial designers can find many career and educational opportunities in the Fort Wayne, Indiana area. Currently, 1,210 people work as industrial designers in Indiana. This is expected to grow by 5% to about 1,270 people by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for industrial designers are expected to grow by about 9.0%. Industrial designers generally develop and design manufactured products, such as cars, home appliances, and children's toys.

A person working as an industrial designer can expect to earn about $25 hourly or $53,360 annually on average in Indiana and about $27 per hour or $57,350 annually on average in the U.S. as a whole. Earnings for industrial designers are better than earnings in the general category of Art and Design in Indiana and better than general Art and Design category earnings nationally. People working as industrial designers can fill a number of jobs, such as: motorcycle designer, textile designer, and product engineer.

There are sixteen schools of higher education in the Fort Wayne area, including five within twenty-five miles of Fort Wayne where you can get a degree to start your career as an industrial designer. The most common level of education for industrial designers is a Bachelor's degree. You can expect to spend about four years studying to be an industrial designer if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Industrial Designer

Industrial Designer video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, industrial designers develop and design manufactured products, such as cars, home appliances, and children's toys. They also combine artistic talent with research on product use, marketing, and materials to create the most functional and appealing product design.

Industrial designers ready sketches of concepts or blueprints, using drafting instruments, paints and brushes, or computer-aided layout equipment. They also talk with engineering or sales departments, or with customers, to determine and evaluate layout concepts for manufactured products. Equally important, industrial designers have to modify and refine designs, using working models, to conform with customer specifications or changes in layout trends. They are often called upon to present designs and reports to customers or layout committees for approval, and consider need for modification. They are expected to direct and schedule the fabrication of models or samples and the drafting of working drawings and specification sheets from sketches. Finally, industrial designers evaluate feasibility of layout concepts, on the basis of factors such as appearance, safety, function, serviceability, budget, production costs/methods, and market characteristics.

Every day, industrial designers are expected to be able to prioritize information for further consideration. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for industrial designers to read publications and study competing products and layout styles and motifs to obtain perspective and generate layout concepts. They are often called upon to direct the look and function of product lines. They also participate in new product planning or market research, including studying the potential need for new products. They are sometimes expected to investigate product characteristics such as the product's safety and handling qualities, its market appeal, how efficiently it can be produced, and ways of distributing, using and maintaining it. Somewhat less frequently, industrial designers are also expected to design manufacturing procedures and monitor the manufacture of their designs in a factory to further optimize operations and product quality.

Industrial designers sometimes are asked to advise corporations on issues involving corporate image projects or problems. And finally, they sometimes have to design industrial standards and regulatory guidelines.

Like many other jobs, industrial designers must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Fort Wayne include:

  • Craftsman. Create or reproduce hand-made objects for sale and exhibition using a variety of techniques, such as welding, weaving, and needlecraft.
  • Display Specialist. Plan and erect commercial displays.
  • Fine Artist. Create original artwork using any of a wide variety of mediums and techniques.
  • Graphic Designer. Design or create graphics to meet specific commercial or promotional needs, such as packaging, displays, or logos. May use a variety of mediums to achieve artistic or decorative effects.
  • Interior Designer. Plan, design, and furnish interiors of residential, commercial, or industrial buildings. Formulate design which is practical, aesthetic, and conducive to intended purposes, such as raising productivity, selling merchandise, or improving life style. May specialize in a particular field, style, or phase of interior design.
  • Multi-Media Artist or Animator. Create special effects, animation, or other visual images using film, video, or other electronic tools and media for use in products or creations, such as computer games, movies, and commercials.
  • Set and Exhibit Designer. Design special exhibits and movie, television, and theater sets. May study scripts, confer with directors, and conduct research to determine appropriate architectural styles.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Industrial Designer Training

University of Saint Francis-Ft Wayne - Fort Wayne, IN

University of Saint Francis-Ft Wayne, 2701 Spring St, Fort Wayne, IN 46808-3994. University of Saint Francis-Ft Wayne is a small university located in Fort Wayne, Indiana. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,112 students and an admission rate of 47%. University of Saint Francis-Ft Wayne has 2 areas of study related to Industrial Designer. They are:

  • Commercial and Advertising Art, associate's degree and bachelor's degree which graduated one and one students respectively in 2008.
  • Design and Applied Arts, Other Specialties, bachelor's degree which graduated 6 students in 2008.

International Business College - Fort Wayne, IN

International Business College, 5699 Coventry Lane, Fort Wayne, IN 46804-7145. International Business College is a small college located in Fort Wayne, Indiana. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 620 students. International Business College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Commercial and Advertising Art which graduated fourteen and twenty-six students respectively in 2008.

ITT Technical Institute-Fort Wayne - Fort Wayne, IN

ITT Technical Institute-Fort Wayne, 2810 Dupont Commerce Court, Fort Wayne, IN 46825. ITT Technical Institute-Fort Wayne is a small school located in Fort Wayne, Indiana. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 695 students and an admission rate of 41%. ITT Technical Institute-Fort Wayne has an associate's degree program in Design and Visual Communications.

Huntington University - Huntington, IN

Huntington University, 2303 College Ave, Huntington, IN 46750. Huntington University is a small university located in Huntington, Indiana. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,211 students and an admission rate of 88%. Huntington University has a bachelor's degree program in Commercial and Advertising Art.

Indiana University-Purdue University-Fort Wayne - Fort Wayne, IN

Indiana University-Purdue University-Fort Wayne, 2101 E Coliseum Blvd, Fort Wayne, IN 46805-1499. Indiana University-Purdue University-Fort Wayne is a large university located in Fort Wayne, Indiana. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 12,338 students and an admission rate of 96%. Indiana University-Purdue University-Fort Wayne has an associate's degree program in Commercial and Advertising Art which graduated ten students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Lighting Management Consultant: The lighting industry prides itself on distinguishing those persons who have accomplished this professional and personal achievement.

For more information, see the International Association of Lighting Management Companies website.

Certified Apprentice Lighting Technician: NALMCO offers a home study certification program, the Certified Apprentice Lighting Technician (CALT), which is indispensable for both entry-level and midlevel lighting management personnel.

For more information, see the International Association of Lighting Management Companies website.

Certified Senior Lighting Technician: NALMCO offers a home study certification program, the Certified Senior Lighting Technician (CSLT) which is indispensable for both entry-level and midlevel lighting management personnel.

For more information, see the International Association of Lighting Management Companies website.

Web Graphics and Multimedia Certificate: Equips the student for work as a Web graphic artist, creating illustrations, pictures, buttons, and other images for use on the Web, as well as the ability to create interactive multimedia designs in Flash or other programs.

For more information, see the International Webmasters Association website.

Highway Design: This certification program was designed for engineering technicians who are engaged in the preparation of plans, specifications, and estimates for proposed highway construction projects.

For more information, see the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies website.

Certified Playground Safety Inspector: Known as the most comprehensive training program on public playground safety, NRPA's National Playground Safety Institute offers hours of training by nationally certified playground safety experts, and prepares professionals for the Certified Playground Safety Inspector (CPSI) exam.

For more information, see the National Recreation and Park Association website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Fort Wayne, Indiana

Fort Wayne, Indiana
Fort Wayne, Indiana photo by FTSKfan

Fort Wayne is located in Allen County, Indiana. It has a population of over 215,661. The cost of living index in Fort Wayne, 77, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Fort Wayne are valued at $141,700 on average, which is below the state average. In 2008, one hundred thirty-eight new homes were constructed in Fort Wayne, down from one hundred seventy-three the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Fort Wayne are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, transportation equipment, and metal and metal products. The average travel time to work is about 20 minutes. More than 19.4% of Fort Wayne residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.5%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Fort Wayne is 10.5%, which is greater than Indiana's average of 9.4%.

The percentage of Fort Wayne residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 50.2%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Memorial Church, Bethany Church and Souls Harbor Church are some of the churches located in Fort Wayne. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church and the United Methodist Church.

Fort Wayne is home to the Orchard Ridge Country Club and the Georgetown Square as well as Swinney Park and Rockhill Park. Shopping centers in the area include The Uncommons Shopping Center, Decatur Road Shopping Center and Ayr-Way West Shopping Center. Visitors to Fort Wayne can choose from Days Inn Airport Plaza, Purofirst of Allen County and Hometown Inn for temporary stays in the area.