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International Options for UC Industrial Design Students Sees Significant Growth

Over the past four years, UC’s nationally number-one ranked industrial design program has expanded study-abroad options for its students. And this fall, 13 industrial design majors travel abroad to both Asia and Europe taking courses in sister programs, traveling and even working professionally when possible.

Date: 7/21/2012 12:00:00 AM
By: M.B. Reilly
Phone: (513) 556-1824
Photos By: UC students

UC ingot   Designing expanded study-abroad options for students in the University of Cincinnati’s nationally number-one ranked industrial design program means that this coming fall, an all-time high 13 students in the program will be heading for study, travel, and possible professional work in France, Germany, Japan and Korea.

UC industrial design students from the College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning (DAAP) will be heading to
UC ID students Jordan Hildebrandt, Brandon Eder and Daniel Wodarcyk.
UC industrial design students currently studying in Wuppertal, Germany. From left are Jordan Hildebrandt, Brandon Eder and Daniel Wodarcyk. They are attending a soccer match between the German cities of Wuppertal vs. Dortmund.

EnsAD (l'École nationale supérieure des Arts Décoratifs) in Paris
  • Liz Robison
Bergische Universitat Wuppertal in Wuppertal, Germany
  • Jeffrey Brown
  • Joyce Chiang
  • Jenna Effler
  • Jonathan Grossman
  • Holly Howes
Kunsthochschule Berlin-Weissensee in Berlin, Germany
  • Matthew Baer
  • Travis Whetroth
Chiba University in Chiba, Japan (named among the world’s best design schools by BusinessWeek)
  • Jessican Chan
  • Sandra Lin
  • Victor Khramov
KAIST (formerly the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology) in  Daejeon, South Korea
  • Ivan McCuistion
  • Rance Pritchard
UC students also have the option of studying at the Monterrey, Mexico, Center for Higher Learning in Design and the Handong Global University (School of Industrial and Information Design), Pohang, South Korea; however, no UC students will be taking advantage of that opportunity during the coming year.

As UC moves to the semester academic calendar in Fall 2012, Steve Doehler, assistant professor of design, explained that most ID students traveling abroad will spend the fall term studying in a sister program, and then spend the following spring either traveling or working an international cooperative education term.

“We want to provide more and longer opportunities for our students because of the global nature of the design profession. It’s one of the reasons the ID program has more students than ever before going abroad this fall. We actually had 23 students who wanted to travel abroad but had exchange slots for only 13,” he added.

One of those 13 is Liz Robison, 20, of Midland, Mich., who is currently a third-year industrial design student. She began learning French 11 years ago and is actually pursuing a minor in French while also pursuing her design major.

She said, “Studying design in Parish (at EnsAD) was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up. It combines my love of design with my love for the French language and culture.”

Robison added, “I think that getting to learn design from a completely different perspective will be great. Everyone attacks problems in different ways based on their backgrounds, prior knowledge, experiences and surroundings. Studying in Paris will surely be a great learning experience in that respect. Seeing things in a different way is huge in the world of design, and this is one way to do that.”
UC ID students Daniel Wodarcyk and Brandon Eder.
UC industrial design students currently studying in Europe, Daniel Wodarcyk and Brandon Eder, spell out "UC" on a beach near Barcelona, Spain.

One ID student currently studying in Wuppertal, Germany, is Brandon Eder, 23, of Hamilton, Ohio, who will begin his senior year at UC this fall. Of his time abroad so far, Eder said, “For me, the best part about this experience is the push. Pushing myself in school, pushing myself to learn a new language, make decisions on the fly, stepping out of my boundaries. We are here (in Wuppertal) to become better designers. I’m only half way through my semester here, and all three of my projects I am working on are being put in my current portfolio. This hasn't taken away from my travels either. I’ve already been to ten different cities and multiple countries, as far as Denmark, the Netherlands, Sweden and Spain.”

And Eder plans to continue his design work and travels before returning to UC in mid-August. Ahead on his agenda are visits to Amsterdam, Bruge, Brussels, London, Munich, Prague and Paris.

He added, “I often like to spend one day running around the entire city hitting the tourist spots. Then, the next day completely relaxed at a beach, at the park, on a bike ride, anything that you see the locals enjoying because that is why you travel: To see and experience how other people live.”