As most of you know, I am a tour guide at The New School Welcome Center, and I thought as a change of pace I would introduce you to some of my co-workers. You may have toured with these fine people or just seen them around campus but now it’s time to get to know them one on one…
Kelsey is one of my favorite people at Parsons – she’s currently a sophomore in product design and actually transferred to Parsons from a liberal arts college. She is originally from Williamsburg, Virginia, and she’s probably the cutest person you’ll ever meet. If you’ve toured with her you’d know she’s just a bubbly Chatty Cathy! But because she transferred here, she offers a different perspective on the admissions process, so I asked her to answer some quick questions for us about her thus far at Parsons.
What were your reasons for transferring to Parsons?
I think the biggest decision for any high school senior is deciding whether to attend a liberal arts school or a design school. When it came time for me to make this decision, I opted for a traditional college experience complete with fraternities, a college campus, and a rich student life. I quickly realized after my first semester that the extent of the arts education I would receive there would go no further than Drawing I, II, III, and VI; Painting I, II, III, VI; Sculpture I….etc. When I started looking into different design schools, I found Parsons and was drawn to the fact that while they offer an amazing array of design courses, falling under the blanket of The New School allowed me to still pursue some of my interests in liberal arts as well.
Why did you choose Product Design?
I wasn’t drawn to Product Design immediately, or really even understood what it was before I came to Parsons. I was completely obsessed with Project Runaway and determined to go into Fashion. If there were a way around Foundation Year I would have leapt at the opportunity to go straight into my major. Little did I know, like most students in my Foundation section, my first year courses exposed me to areas of design that caught my attention and changed my path completely. After taking 3D II second semester with Adam Brent, his course challenged me and transformed the way I looked at everyday objects.
What’s your favorite project you’ve ever done at Parsons?
My favorite project at Parsons thus far was a project I did on tension and compression in my 3D class Foundation Year. We were given a loose prompt asking us to create something that illustrated the principles of both tension and compression in any way we choose. This project gave me the ability to creative and problem solve in whatever design aesthetic appealed to me.
What was the worst and best part about Foundation?
The best part about Foundation was the broad exposure to so many different facets of design that both challenged and informed us. This exposure helped us all to make educated decisions when it came time to declare our major in March of our first year. The worst part of foundation year was the learning curve involved with time management. Design school differs from traditional liberal arts schools and high school in terms of workload. Unlike writing papers or completing problem sets, the projects you’re given have no clear resolutions so you have to decide when to walk away from a project that’s not working and how to manage you’re various projects going on at the same time.
What is your favorite New York City cheap eat?
My absolute favorite cheap eat is Oyama Sushi on 1st Ave. and 9th St. You get three rolls with a soup or salad for $9.95. It’s cheap, fresh, and a total hole in the wall. Win, win, win.
What is your biggest tip for incoming freshmen?
My biggest tip for incoming freshman is to keep an open mind. Regardless of what you think you want to major in, take full advantage of foundation year and the exposure you’ll get to all areas of design. Being open will help you to explore design and find strengths in specialties you’ve never attempted.
Just a quick thank you to Kelsey for answering these questions and if your ever in The New School Welcome Center don’t hesitate to stop on by and say hello!