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parsons the new school for design UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAMS

Found objects collected in Parsons studios (material samples, tools, reference documents, process artifacts) and samples of student and faculty work. Collage by mgmt. design.

parsons the new school for design UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAMS


Welcome to Parsons


Possibilities, Principles, Place: Student Life


Projects: Student Work




Liberal Arts


Art and Design Studies


First-Year Options


Architectural Design


Communication Design


Design and Management


Design and Technology


Environmental Studies


Fashion Design


Fine Arts




Integrated Design Curriculum


Interior Design




Product Design


Institutional Information




Visit Parsons


Index of Areas of Study

Why Parsons The New School for Design? A pioneer in art and design education for more than a century, Parsons is a diverse community of independent thinkers motivated by the prospect of challenging conventions and finding solutions to complex problems. Critical thinking, collaboration, reflective practice—these are the skills you’ll develop in the studio, during seminars, and in discussions with friends at one in the morning. As a student, you’ll benefit from instruction by some of the most accomplished artists, designers, architects, photographers, illustrators, scholars, and critics in the world, and Parsons’ reputation and professional connections are unmatched. Our alumni rank among the leaders in their fields. Internships provide unique entrée into professional life, and partnerships with all kinds of organizations, from start-ups and nonprofits to some of the biggest names in industry, afford a wealth of opportunities for aspiring designers. Even as Parsons gives you the tools to achieve professional success, we prepare you to move beyond current paradigms—to anticipate and set trends, rather than follow them. We want you to think about how you can improve people’s lives in direct and fundamental ways. Students arrive with their own interests, perspectives, and experiences, but they graduate with a shared commitment to making the world a more stimulating, beautiful, and sustainable environment for human life.



















Parsons in The New School Art. Design. Transformation. Innovation. Action.

Parsons students have gone on to forge new paths, not only in art and design but also in public policy, business, social science, the humanities, and beyond. That’s because a Parsons education combines the creative focus of an independent art and design school with the resources of a large university. Parsons is part of The New School, an urban university of eight schools, known for social and political consciousness and pioneering academic programs in the social sciences and humanities, media studies, the arts, and business. Parsons students have access to a broad liberal arts curriculum and are encouraged to take courses offered by the other schools within the university. What has always distinguished Parsons and The New School from other institutions of higher learning is a commitment to addressing the most urgent challenges facing society. At the same time, we’re committed to helping you develop the intellectual and creative skills that will allow you to succeed in virtually any arena of life.











Parsons in New York Your campus is New York City, THE world capital of art, culture, business, fashion, and intellectual INQUIRY.

A Parsons education isn’t just a series of isolated classes—it’s a fully immersive learning experience in which the city itself serves as an urban design laboratory. Our distinguished faculty is a team of accomplished artists, designers, architects, photographers, and critics that could have been assembled only in a design capital like New York. Outside the classroom, students have access to internship opportunities and industry partnerships, which open up many possibilities for entrepreneurship and professional success. Situated in the heart of Manhattan, Parsons is a major cultural destination in its own right, a venue for exhibitions, performances, and lectures by some of the world’s most celebrated artists and thinkers. In addition to enjoying the resources on campus, students have access to the galleries, showrooms, and events of New York City, the nexus of the international art and design worlds. In every respect, Parsons gives students the opportunity to excel at the center of it all. The main campus is located downtown in Greenwich Village, a residential neighborhood near many art and design studios and multimedia companies. Fashion Design is in the Fashion District, amid the showrooms of leading designers and manufacturers. Wherever you study, you are just steps away from the streets of New York, the living history of design, and the Next Big Thing.




















Parsons in the World Based in New York; active across the globe

At Parsons, we believe that artists and designers have the means—and the responsibility—to bring about positive change in the world. Throughout the school, students develop design solutions to meet the needs of diverse communities on the local and the global scale. They work in a learning environment where cross-cultural perspectives are valued and nurtured and where awareness of economic and social systems is understood as essential in the context of globalization. An international outlook has always been a key ingredient of Parsons’ success. In 1920, Parsons became the first art and design school in the United States to establish a campus abroad. Today more than one third of Parsons students are international — a testament to our global reputation. While benefiting from the constant influx of international perspectives in New York, you can also expand your horizons by studying abroad at top art and design schools throughout the world. We have a growing network of exchange partners, with whom you can BEIJING

apply to study for a semester or a year. One of the most popular options is study at our affiliatedTOKYO school, Parsons Paris. Parsons also has exchange relationships with top schools in Scotland, India, Germany, Australia, and East Asia. In addition, we

offer a changing menu of intensive short courses abroad led by Parsons faculty.














A Message from the Dean This is an opportune time to study at Parsons and The New School. The world is being designed and redesigned at a dizzying pace, creating complex and rapidly changing landscapes of opportunity for artists and designers whose skills, creativity, and perseverance define them as critical thinkers and problem solvers. Designers are uniquely trained and well positioned to engage with the most challenging issues of our time, and design thinking is increasingly being recognized as a core literacy in the 21st century. The ability to creatively assess, reposition, imagine, and propose innovative designs for the world we inhabit and leave to future generations is essential for new thinking about sustainability, mobility, communication, dwelling, and cities to emerge. At Parsons, we expand the frontiers of design, addressing needs at scales ranging from the individual to communities across the globe. Whether you are interested in digital design or fashion design, the narrative arc or the visual and sensual world, the design of the everyday or the sustainable transformation of large, complex systems, at Parsons you will find a home and a challenge. Parsons’ five schools—Art, Media and Technology; Fashion; Constructed Environments; Art and Design History and Theory; and Design Strategies—are characterized by disciplinary strength and cross-disciplinary innovation. Our programs span the range of contemporary art and design practices as well as new interdisciplinary pathways, and degrees in areas like environmental studies, urban design, and media. And as part of The New School, Parsons offers a diverse and comprehensive education at the intersection of design, the liberal arts, the social sciences, performance, management, and urban policy. Every day I am inspired by Parsons’ remarkable faculty and students. Witnessing their many accomplishments constantly renews and deepens our commitment to design education and research. In the following pages, you will learn more about the school. I hope you will join us.

Joel Towers, Dean

(facing page) Dorin Levy, Migration, paper and fishing wire, Fine Art

History Parsons and The New School: A Long History of Radical Pedagogy

Parsons’ tradition of supporting radical thinking in the academy goes back to 1896, when the painter William Merritt Chase founded the school to promote freer forms of individual expression. In 1904, Frank Alvah Parsons joined Chase, and under his leadership, the school introduced design into its curriculum. By emphasizing the democratizing potential of design and making it available on a broad scale, Parsons has had a profound impact on American life. As Parsons was becoming a revolutionary force in art and design education, another school was launched in the name of social dissent and democracy. Established in 1919, The New School was conceived as a place where artists and intellectuals could freely exchange ideas. In 1933, a University in Exile was created within The New School as a haven for scholars and artists forced to leave Europe. The next decades saw the two schools become more closely aligned in mission. As The New School established a reputation for addressing major cultural and political issues, Parsons began working on urban design projects such as hospitals and public housing. In 1970, Parsons became part of The New School, an institution that has since grown into a university of eight schools. Our shared history has been a continuous narrative of transformation and civic engagement. Notable Alumni Through the Decades: A Timeline for Innovation 1900 s

Edward Hopper painter

1980 s

Norman Rockwell illustrator

Alex Lee product designer and president of OXO

1910 s

Eleanor McMillen Brown interior designer

Victoria Hagan interior designer

1920 s

Adrian and Claire McCardell costume designers

1930 s

Van Day Truex interior designer and Tiffany & Co. design director

Isaac Mizrahi, Tom Ford, Marc Jacobs, and Narciso Rodriguez fashion designers

1990 s

Sheila Bridges interior designer

Paul Rand graphic designer

Sue de Beer and Brian Tolle artists

1940 s

Albert Hadley and Mario Buatta interior designers

David Horvath and Sun-Min Kim toy designers

Jasper Johns painter

Peter Som, Behnaz Sarafpour, and Derek Lam fashion designers

1960 s

Joel Schumacher filmmaker

Michael Donovan graphic designer

Barbara Kruger artist and graphic designer

Dan Yaccarino illustrator

2000 s

Ryan McGinley photographer

Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough of Proenza Schouler fashion designers

Donna Karan fashion designer

1970 s

Jeff Ng brand, marketing, and fashion entrepreneur

Steven Meisel photographer

Nina Chanel Abney painter

Jamie Drake interior designer

Alexander Wang fashion designer

Anna Sui fashion designer

Carly Yates product designer and interior designer

Peter de Sève illustrator

Bridget de Socio brand strategist



MEETING WITH NEW YORK CITY COUNCIL ON THE ENVIRONMENT Gain valuable industry experience working on sponsored projects with local companies and organizations.

FINE ART LECTURE SERIES FLYER Interact with the prominent artists and designers who are your guest lecturers and visiting critics.

INVITATION TO EXHIBITION OPENING Exhibit your work at high-profile venues.

INTERNSHIP PLACEMENT Build your resume working directly with designers and clients.

STUDENT RUN NEWSPAPER Participate in extra-curricular activities like media and  journalism projects.

Possibilities: Collaborations Interdisciplinary projects and courses at Parsons underscore expanding conceptions of art and design practice in the 21st century. With advances in methodologies, communications channels, and technologies, these collaborative initiatives keep Parsons at the forefront of art and design innovation. Parsons faculty members encourage the exchange of ideas across fields. Students are encouraged to take courses in other scholarly and creative disciplines.

Urban Mapping Project Installing New York, New York, New York Site: Flux Factory, an art and performance space in Queens, New York. Condition: Students were invited to participate in the creation of New York, New York, New York, an interactive multimedia installation inspired by the Panorama, the scale model of New York City made for the 1964 World’s Fair, now in the Queens Museum of Art. Outcome: Students participated in a large collaborative urban landscape mapping project that reimagined the public and private spaces of New York and explored the architectural and conceptual elements of everyday space. Parsons Team: Cluster8, a team of first-year Foundation students. Partners: Flux Factory art collective; more than 100 artists from all five boroughs of New York City and around the world.



Possibilities: External Partnerships As a student at Parsons, you have opportunities to work with corporate and nonprofit organizations to deliver design solutions to real challenges. We partner with more than 50 organizations, like Target, Kiehl’s, CARE, Chanel, Fossil, and the Sierra Club. We consistently attract such leading industry partners because our students provide exceptional results. While our partners benefit from your fresh ideas and design skills, you gain professional exposure, build your portfolio, and enjoy networking opportunities through sponsored projects that are often built into your classwork. Many projects involve students from two or more design disciplines working together. The process is similar to the kinds of collaboration you’ll experience after graduation. Project models range from intensive three-day sessions to four-week competitions to multi-semester courses. Your work is supervised by faculty mentors who hold key positions in the art, technology, and design worlds.

Luxury Education Foundation Presenting marketing and product concepts to executives in the luxury goods industry Condition: The Luxury Education Foundation sponsored an innovative interdisciplinary course to act as an incubator for new ideas for participating companies. Outcome: Students had a rare opportunity to interact with top executives in the industry and learn about business strategy and product development from the inside. Projects included strategies to increase brand visibility for Faber-Castell, products to promote Saks Fifth Avenue’s new logo, product concepts for Lladró, fragrance concepts for LVMH Perfumes and Cosmetics, and “Chanel 2012,” a strategy for the luxury market. Parsons Team: Students from Design and Management, Integrated Design Curriculum, Communication Design, Product Design, and AAS Fashion Marketing. Partners: Columbia University graduate business students; executives from


participating companies. ReImagining the Chair The installation at Design Within Reach Challenge: To produce individual renditions of a design icon—the Bellini Chair by Heller—as part of a semester-long project, Reimagining the Chair. Students began with an idea on paper and finished by fabricating a full-scale prototype. Outcome: An installation of the reinterpreted chairs was featured in an exhibition and reception at Design Within Reach’s New York flagship. Parsons Team: Illustration students from the Beyond Editorial class. Partners: Design Within Reach; Heller.



Principles: Social Responsibility and Global Civic Engagement Design with a cause

The New School was founded on the premise that social responsibility and civic engagement are fundamental to intellectual inquiry. This progressive spirit animates Parsons and The New School as a whole. In line with that tradition, Parsons students connect their creative practice with the highest ideals of engaged citizenship, bringing social and environmental awareness to the works they create.

urban interventions Conducting on-site research for the Urban Interventions course Site: Lower Garden District, New Orleans. Challenge: To develop a mixed-income, mixed-use development in a district beside the Mississippi River that suffered a substantial loss of affordable housing in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Outcome: After a semester of intensive research and analysis of the site—its demographics, transportation systems, and building locations—students developed an innovative and financially viable solution for community development. Their proposal was chosen as a finalist in a nationwide competition in which the winning team receives a $25,000 donation by JPMorgan Chase to put toward implementation. Parsons Team: Students from Integrated Design Curriculum, Architecture, and Interior Design. Partners: Volunteers for America; students from Milano The New School for Management and Urban Policy.


care A preliminary site visit Site: Guatemala. Challenge: To work with a group of Mayan weavers developing a sustainable business enterprise to facilitate the sale of artisanal textiles in local and global markets. Outcome: Fourteen students spent the month of June in Guatemala taking part in workshops and assessing the feasibility of the project. Parsons Team: Students and faculty from Integrated Design Curriculum, Fashion Design, Design and Management, Graphic Design, AAS Fashion Design, and AAS Fashion Marketing. Partners: Students and faculty from the graduate program in International Affairs; the international humanitarian organization CARE; an association of female artisans in Guatemala.


Principles: Sustainability Making meaningful and sustainable contributions to contemporary societies

The New School’s unique position at the nexus of art, design, social science, and public policy offers the optimal learning environment for those interested in connecting their art and design practice to the urgent need to develop sustainable human environments. Our environment is the New York metropolitan area. There are many opportunities to work with towns, cities, states, nongovernmental groups, corporations, universities, and other organizations. Strong community and industry partnerships help you build the skills and knowledge to become an active and informed citizen as well as a successful artist, designer, or scholar.

sustainable design review Finalist projects by Parsons students Isa Wong (top) and Karl Alex Bulloch, Jen Mutrux, and Marie Clare Bush (bottom) Challenge: To develop packaging that encourages ecologically responsible consumption as part of the Sustainable Design Review, an annual student-run competition. Outcome: A jury of sustainable design advocates helped narrow down the submissions to five finalists. Kiehl’s plans to explore employing the winning designs in stores nationwide. Project Team: The competition is open to all New School students and is hosted by the Design and Management program. Partner: Kiehl’s.


Design workshop: Margaretville Project Constructing the new Margaretville Pavilion as part of the Design Workshop Site: Margaretville, in upstate New York. Challenge: For 50 years, the Margaretville Pavilion has served as a vital community symbol and gathering place, hosting festivals and other events. When the village suffered extreme flooding, the structure decayed and was rendered unstable. Students were mobilized to redesign the pavilion and propose other designs to revitalize the town. Outcome: As part of Parsons’ unique design-build program, the Design Workshop, students designed and constructed a 5,000-square-foot pavilion that has become an iconic centerpiece to the town’s revitalization efforts. Designs were also proposed for new public seating, a bus depot, vendor kiosks, and a riverside pathway for erosion control. Parsons Team: Students from Architecture, Interior Design, Lighting Design, and Product Design. Partners: CICS and M-ARK Project, two local nonprofits that raised funds to initiate revitalization efforts.


Possibilities: Studio-based Research An innovator in art and design education, Parsons is both a research institution and a renowned teaching school. Our faculty is made up of writers, critics, historians, scholars, and practitioners with exceptional accomplishments and an extraordinary breadth of vision. Our growing research profile is evident in the achievements of our students as well. Over the last few years, Parsons students have been awarded prestigious Fulbright fellowships to complete research projects in China, Cyprus, Iceland, Greece, the Philippines, and Malaysia. Parsons is also taking the lead in shaping scholarship through applied, studio-based research. Here, you participate in projects that transcend traditional research paradigms and examine the relationship between theory and practice. Collaborating closely with faculty, you work with emerging technologies and pioneer research methods, helping to shape social, cultural, and economic systems in areas ranging from entertainment and interface design to sustainability and urban community development.

Petlab Open House, a sustainability game Site: Philip Johnson’s Glass House in Connecticut, an icon of midcentury modern style. Condition: Parsons received a $450,000 grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation to launch PETLab (Prototyping, Evaluation, Teaching and Learning Lab), the first public-interest game design and research laboratory for interactive media. In its first year, PETLab worked with Microsoft’s Xbox development platform and MTV’s youth-focused online activist community designing learning tools and digital games that explore social issues. Parsons Team: Students and faculty from Communication Design, Design and Technology, and Foundation. Partners: The nonprofit organization Games for Change; Microsoft; MTV.


Baris Gokturk Alumnus fine arts

A native of Turkey, Baris Gokturk describes his experience at Parsons as “cosmopolitan and international. I not only met people from all over the world but also worked with them in my classes.” Baris explored a number of areas of design before deciding that fine arts is his true passion. He says, “The faculty was so supportive when I switched from Illustration to Integrated Design Curriculum and then to Fine Arts. By allowing me to try different fields, they helped me realize that what I really want to do is paint.”

Today painting is exactly what Baris does. For his junior-year intern-

ship, a standard part of the Fine Arts program, Baris worked with sculptor Jeanne Silverthorne. He currently works with painter Fabian Marcaccio while studying for his MFA in painting. “I am working on a series of paintings about the intangibility of information versus knowledge. In my paintings, I work with sets of words whose meaning is becoming more and more ambiguous because of overuse and deliberate political misuse.” Baris uses images, found mainly through Google, to create collages representing “reconsidered meanings” of the words. “I aim for a chewed-up, worn-off pictorial zone” in which “the meaning is stripped off the word, the image is stripped of meaning, painting is stripped of painting, and so on. This way, every aspect of the work becomes paradoxical yet its raison d’etre becomes meaningful.”

Possibilities: Career Services Throughout your education, you’re encouraged to gain real-world experience and build your résumé through internships. More than 2,000 employers contact Parsons every year to recruit graduates for their companies. The Office of Career Services helps you develop the skills, confidence, and industry contacts to succeed and will continue to match you with employers throughout your career.

We offer

Parsons Grads: Where are they now?

–Twice-yearly on-campus internship fairs with representatives from more than 50 high-profile companies

Aero interior designer

–On-campus recruiting events –A comprehensive job board with more than 3,000 internship postings each year –Employer and alumni panels –Workshops on résumé writing, portfolio development, and professional networking

Anne Klein product designer Atlantic Records video producer

Lincoln Center senior art director L’Oréal packaging designer

Aveda visual merchandiser

Michael Kors senior menswear designer

Barneys retail planner

MTV art director

Bergdorf Goodman assistant buyer

Nickelodeon director of animation

Bloomingdale’s merchandise analyst

Ogilvy & Mather storyboard artist

Calvin Klein product development manager

Oscar de la Renta creative manager

Dassault Falcon Jet aircraft interior designer

Polo Ralph Lauren autocad designer

The Disney Corporation art director

R/GA interactive designer

Dreamworks character technical director

Rag & Bone production assistant

Entertainment Weekly creative director

Razorfish information architect

Ermenegildo Zegna sales coordinator

Rockwell Group assistant interior designer

Estée Lauder Inc. executive design director

Saks Fifth Avenue buyer

Fox and Fowle assistant interior designer

Scholastic art director

Fresh Cosmetics owner and co-founder

Smith-Miller + Hawkinson architect

Gap Inc. associate intimates designer

Sotheby’s senior designer

Giorgio Armani merchandising coordinator Givenchy marketing assistant Gluckman Mayner architect HarperCollins book designer

Sephora graphic designer Sesame Street art director Sony Music graphic designer Starwood Hotels furniture designer Steve Madden shoe designer Pretty Ugly (Uglydolls) principals and toy designers United Nations Web designer


Place: Academic Resources The Office of Advising provides general academic support services to students, who receive assistance in developing good study habits and skills, managing their time, and choosing a major. Program advisors serve as a primary resource for information on program requirements and academic progress, registration, course approval, and program policies and practices. Advisors also refer students to other services at the university. In addition to the facilities and services at specific academic programs, Parsons and The New School offer resources for all students that provide optimal conditions for learning.



–Students have access to more than 1,000

–At the Donghia Materials Library, students

computer workstations on campus; the print

can review and check out the newest, most

output center, which offers high-quality

advanced materials.

color printing; and specialized labs with professional video, modeling, animation, and recording facilities. –Special classrooms support multimedia, Web design, and desktop publishing. –Free wireless Internet is available across campus. –Audiovisual equipment is available for loan. Exhibition and Studio Facilities –The Sheila C. Johnson Design Center is a new campus center for Parsons that combines spaces for learning and public programs with galleries at the intersection of Fifth Avenue and 13th Street. –The Aronson and Kellen galleries comprise more

–The Gimbel Art and Design Library houses more than 50,000 new and rare books, 350 periodical titles, 70,000 slides, and 45,000 picture files, including mounted plates, slide collections, and a digital image collection with online access. –The Kellen Archive is an extensive collection of materials relating to the history of art and design, with a focus on Parsons’ role in the development of design and design education. –The New School’s Fogelman Library, specializing in the social sciences and humanities, contains 3 million books and 25,000 journals. –Parsons students have access to the facilities of the Research Library Association of South Manhattan, a consortium that includes the libraries of New York University, the Cooper

than 6,000 square feet of street-level gallery

Union, the New York Academy of Art, and the

space. Rotating exhibitions feature work by

New-York Historical Society.

outside artists and designers, Parsons faculty, and Parsons students. –Students have access to extensive studio facilities and professionally staffed model, fabrication, and print shops, including metalworking, jewelry, and woodworking facilities.




Place: Student Services A professional and helpful staff is available to meet a range of needs, offering health care, housing advice, and other services. Housing and Dining Services

At Parsons, you live and study as part of a diverse community in a dynamic city. University residence halls in the Greenwich Village and Wall Street areas are a secure and supportive environment that can ease the transition from home to college and from culture to culture. All undergraduate residences come fully furnished, and each is staffed with a professional residence hall director and student resident assistants. In addition to providing 24-hour security coverage, our staff is available and trained to handle emergencies. The Housing Office also provides listings of apartments and a comprehensive off-campus housing guide. We strongly encourage students unfamiliar with New York City, particularly first-time freshmen, to take advantage of student housing. Parsons and The New School have several on-campus catering outlets, offering a range of hot and cold food and drinks. Most resident students are automatically enrolled in a meal plan. Health Services

Student Health Services offers students medical care, counseling and psychological services, preventive education, and a low-cost health insurance plan. Student Development and Activities

At any given time, students at the university are involved in a variety of activities, ranging from publications to clubs to athletics to political activism. Many extracurricular organizations are student run. Students are the source of the school’s energy, spirit, and momentum as well as the impetus for evolution and change.


Disability Services

Parsons and The New School are committed to ensuring that students with special needs have full access to academic and programmatic services. Students are encouraged to meet with the Student Disability Office to discuss their needs and available services. The office also offers information on a variety of disability-related issues and on internal and external resources. International Student Services

International Student Services serves the special needs of international students and helps create a supportive environment for living and studying, encouraging them to actively participate in classes, extracurricular activities, and life in New York City. Trained international education specialists provide support throughout the U.S. visa application process and offer legal status advisement. Intercultural Support

The Office of Intercultural Support works with students of diverse backgrounds to build community at The New School. The office offers individual counseling services and sponsors events and workshops to promote intercultural awareness. Writing Center

The university’s Writing Center helps students become better writers through individual tutoring sessions. Students meet with tutors to brainstorm ideas for papers, discuss ways to approach and organize assignments, and develop rough drafts. There are two types of tutors: generalist tutors, who work with all students, and specialists, who work primarily with international students whose first language is not English.


Place: Exhibitions Parsons is a leading venue for contemporary art and design. Exhibitions relating to your coursework enhance your critical, theoretical, and historical understanding of art and design. Our galleries are scheduled year-round with exhibitions of work by outside artists and designers, Parsons faculty, and Parsons students. Parsons has two main streetlevel museum-quality exhibition spaces measuring more than 6,000 square feet: the Kellen Gallery and the Arnold and Sheila Aronson Galleries. Exhibitions may be curated by university staff and faculty or part of national and international traveling exhibitions. When used as a venue for student work, the galleries allow you to obtain construction, installation, and presentation experience in a high-profile exhibition setting. In the spring, departments exhibit the work of their graduating students.



Place: Special Events and Public Programs Parsons and The New School have historically been centers for innovative thinking and artistic experimentation. The tradition continues today, with prominent intellectuals, designers, artists, business leaders, and policy makers regularly visiting the campus to lecture and take part in panels and conferences. Many New York based artists welcome studio visits from our students. Other university events include regular concerts, dance performances, plays, film screenings, and literary readings. Most events are free or discounted for students. For more information, visit The Vera List Center for Art and Politics embodies

Recent guest lecturers and

The New School’s historic commitment to the

visiting artists

arts and is dedicated to nurturing scholarship as a resource and basis for policy making and civic engagement. This institute is a venue for public discourse on the role of the arts in relation to the sociopolitical climate in which they are created. The center regularly convenes artists, scholars, activists, public intellectuals, and political and cultural leaders to address topics of broad resonance.

Lorna Simpson artist and photographer Frank Gehry architect Kiki Smith artist Marc Jacobs fashion designer Chuck Close painter Roselee Goldberg performance art curator and critic Marilyn Minter painter Bruce Mau graphic designer Michael Graves architect and product designer Donna Karan fashion designer Robert Massin graphic artist Phoebe Washburn installation artist Fatimah Tuggar artist John Maeda graphic designer and computer scientist Ed Koren illustrator Ed Sorel illustrator Ken Johnson critic Lynne Cook curator Katha Pollitt poet and columnist for The Nation Bruce Nussbaum Businessweek editor Zach Feuer gallery owner Becky Smith gallery owner Hans-Ulrich Obrist curator Nancy Princenthal critic



WEB-BASED GAME Design objects and systems that integrate theory, experimentation, and hands-on production.

BLOG POST FROM WIRELESS TOY DESIGN CLASS Collaborate on projects that incorporate emerging technologies from multiple fields.

SOUND FILE FOR BROADCAST DESIGN CLASS Work fluidly across media to create innovative, accessible ways of communicating information.

VIDEO INTERVIEW FOR CASE STUDY Invent your own research methods, take risks, and make new discoveries.

RESEARCH FOR INFORMATION DESIGN CLASS PROJECT Learn to think critically about your relationship to the society in which you live.

Yosara Gonzalez, Things We Said, mixedmedia installation, Fine Art

Ashley Burke, Wound Up, animation still using After Effects, Design and Technology Grant Willing, Wendy’s, c-print, Photography


Sara Choi, toy model, Product Design


Bobae Lee, layered knit sweater and wool pants, Fashion Design

Kevin Jean, new concepts for the Museum Watch for Movado, digital rendering, Product Design



Stephanie Suberville, organza and leather dress, Fashion Design


Yoon Jeong Gee, linen suit and graphic T-shirt, Fashion Design

Tara Kelton, Outsource, photographs of sign painters in India handrendering letters typed at Parsons, Communication Design


Anna Skladmann, Untitled, c-print, Photography


Aron Han, full-scale flat pack shelving prototype, plywood, Product Design


Nyna Mezan, Hegelian Onions, onion skins and thread, Fine Art


George Pitts Chair photography

George Pitts is an award-winning photography director, painter, and essayist and a renowned teacher whose work spans the fine art, commercial, and fashion worlds. Pitts has been a Parsons faculty member since 1998 and will become chair of the Photography Department this year.

In addition to teaching at Parsons, Pitts has held a number of

prominent positions, including director of photography at Vibe magazine, where he received three National Magazine Award nominations for Best Photography. Of his work at Vibe he says, “It was an important job because it brought unprecedented visibility to my contributions as a photo editor. We endeavored to bring sophisticated and authentic visual approaches to the documentation of African-American culture that would also have broad appeal for all Americans and readers throughout the world.�

Whether teaching, photo editing, writing, or making images, Pitts

consistently demonstrates a keen aesthetic sense and the ability to work graciously with people of all backgrounds. As the incoming chair, Pitts will uphold the high standards of the department.

Keiko Kojima, Untitled, film stills, Design and Technology

Megan Hunt, Untitled, print, Photography Chad Halstead, Untitled, oil on canvas, Fine Art


Hae-Jeong Choi, TerraBites, vending cart developed in collaboration with New York City Greenmarket, Product Design Emily Mak, Public Bathhouse, wood architectural model, Architecture


Markus Bradley, Table, mixed-media installation with plywood, floodlights, wheatgrass, electrical wire, and switch, Fine Art

Austin Power, Untitled, oil on canvas, Fine Art

Martina Gustavsson, Missing, fabric, and cardboard, Illustration



Christian John, clock, Product Design Carissa Lo, YoCoDo, sex-education game for teenaged girls developed in collaboration with Vibe Theater Experience, Product Design


JB Chae, Color Therapy for Children, design for toy blocks, Communication Design

Martina Sencakova and Amanda Toles Seniors interior design

“Martina and I have always had similar ideas about design and aesthetics,” Amanda Toles says of Martina Sencakova, with whom she collaborated on a thesis project. Martina agrees, adding, “Working with Amanda was easier than working by myself. Every time I would come to a halt, she would bring the project into focus, allowing it to move forward.”

Martina and Amanda redesigned The New School’s building at 25

East 13th Street applying principles of sustainability. “Our focus was on increasing natural light and ventilation. We did so by ‘carving’ two light wells into the building that could change depending on weather conditions. In moderate weather, the interior skin of the space would open, allowing complete natural airflow, while in winter the space acts as a buffer between exterior and interior conditions. The spaces also brought natural light deep into the building through reflective surfaces.”

Although both students describe the curriculum as “intense,” they

would not trade their experience at Parsons for any other. Martina says, “You learn so much more than technical skills. I have become more responsible, organized, and willing to go beyond the expected, and because of the small classes, the relationships you establish are truly one of a kind.” Amanda adds, “The workload is intense, but if you manage your time, it is completely doable. I learned how to think through a problem, apply myself creatively, and work efficiently.”

Heejin Moon, fashion concepts drawing, Fashion Design

Claudia Garay Guerra, Rooftop Arboretum, East Village NYC, mixed-media architectural model, Architecture

Tito Jimenez, More, media installation, Design and Technology


Rosa Chae, Stephanie Chao, Sunny Eun, Byron Kalet, Kayoung Lim, Mark Miner, Maria Wan, Sean Kim (with Cecilia Dean, Greg Foley, Donald Hearn), CDT100 Commemorative Kit, set of ‘puzzle cards’ inspired by the Parsons archives, tools to complete each card, and collectible Parsons stamps; Communication Design


Takuji Koide, Virus, Communication Design



Byron Kalet, The Journal of Popular Noise, package design, Communication Design Jack Lai, Butterfly Gathering, Autodesk Maya animation still, Design and Technology


Nobuhiro Matsui, William Shakespeare, time line depicting Shakespeare’s coinage of English words, Communication Design

Hyun Joo Lee, thesis collection, Fashion Design


Hee Yeon Kim, Artist’s Residence, digital rendering, Interior Design Caroline Pham, Supra Functional, sterling silver forks and ceramic bowls and cups, Integrated Design Curriculum


Lindsey Ruben, Desk System, plywood, Integrated Design Curriculum

Devin McGrath, Confessions of a Music Snob, Illustration

Austin Power, Kristine, watercolor on paper, Fine Arts



Furniture Seminar project (instructor Alfred Zollinger), full-scale installation at 2007 International Contemporary Furniture Fair, Interior Design


Don Brodie, Untitled, c-print, Photography

Miki Nagao, Currency, Communication Design


Lindsay Podd, plush and vinyl toy, Illustration


Chad Halstead, Untitled, oil on canvas, Fine Art

Kiyo Watanabe, PureTAP, collapsible water bottle designed to support the Catskill/Delaware watershed, Product Design


Cat Lauigan, White Pepper Child, graphite and color pencil on paper, Illustration


Paul Chan, East Harlem IKEA hotel, architectural model, Architecture

Michael Hoefler Senior product design

Michael Hoefler’s interests range from painting to jewelry making. He says, “I came to Parsons as a Fine Arts student because it is known not only for design but for social responsibility as well. I switched to Product Design because it is anti-elitist. The things we design are useful to everyone.”

Michael’s thesis project, bounce Baby Sign Products, reflects

both his commitment to social responsibility and his knowledge of product design. The project has special personal significance for Michael, the son of deaf parents. He explains, “Many deaf children have hearing parents who only know how to communicate orally. Parents don’t learn sign language because it is foreign and they are given only an institutional approach to it. I wanted to take everyday necessities and toys, such as baby blankets and building blocks, and add American Sign Language and illustrations to them to introduce sign language to parents and to give both hearing and nonhearing children a method of preverbal communication.”

Kelvin Lin, Beneath the Composition: defining the value of creativity in the music industry, case study, Design and Management

Ohal Wofford, Untitled, digital print, Design and Technology Grace Doherty, Juice, silver albumen print, Photography


Julia Chesky, Untitled, Canon 1Ds digital file, Photography


Stephanie Max, Pile, construction paper collage, Fine Art



Yosara Gonzales, Womb, plastic and thread, Fine Art


Rebecca Stern, Holon A., mixed-media installation, Design and Technology

Fernando Ibarra, Untitled, c-print, Photography


Ji Kim, exhibition installation for Stella Kim clothing label, Integrated Design Curriculum


Julie Puaux, Water Taxi Terminal, architectural model, Architecture

Justin Shoji Alumnus design and management

For Justin Shoji, the Design and Management program was ideal, offering him “fluency in both the business and fashion worlds. I can crunch numbers and analyze spreadsheets, and I also appreciate creativity and design concepts.” Although Justin developed many of these skills in the classroom, his experiences as an intern proved equally important in helping him choose a career.

As a freshman and sophomore, Justin interned at Fashion File TV,

where he worked on broadcasts of events during New York Fashion Week. He also explored the world of event planning as an intern at Mark Stephen Enterprises. But Justin’s favorite internship, arranged with help from Parsons instructor Steve Lindner, was at Diesel. There he joined the women’s wholesale group and “gained incomparable hands-on experience. I was able to assist in appointments with buyers and attend trade shows. There’s nothing better than seeing firsthand how things operate.” After graduating, Justin parlayed this internship into a full-time job, and today he is happily employed as a customer service representative for Diesel.

Sophie Holstein, Untitled, oil on canvas, Fine Art

Matt Edge, Untitled, digital pigment print, Photography


Duncan Smith, Journey of a Mixteco, graphic novel spread, Integrated Design Curriculum


Christopher Nesbit, The Former Southern End of 7th Avenue, Manhattan, c-print, Photography


Ilana Glickman, Space Girls, c-print, Photography


Anna Skladmann, Little Adults, c-print, Photography



Florian Sanger, My 7 World Wonders, digital drawing, Illustration

Kim Fischer, In Plain English, set of cards to help immigrants achieve independence and literacy, Product Design Christine Dajung Oh, re:mind, alternative uses for non-recyclable paper products, Product Design


Pascale Gatzen Faculty integrated design curriculum

“I am interested in developing educational structures that allow students to feel free and to understand their own power and possibilities,” says Integrated Design Curriculum instructor Pascale Gatzen. In her courses, Gatzen ensures that her students have abundant opportunities to grow not only as designers but also as individuals. “I want my students to test the intersection between fashion and reality. Do their designs work? How do people react to the clothing they have made? Testing, making, and doing are very important. We perform in our clothes. I want students to be present, to grow with their work as human beings.”

Gatzen believes that actually making clothing is essential for

students training to become fashion designers. In the core Integrated Fashion Curriculum class, taken by sophomores in the fall, “students develop a creative and critical approach to fashion. They learn by experimenting and playing with clothes that are worn in everyday life. By exploring things that attract them culturally or historically, for example, students make garments for themselves once a week.”

Through a collaborative project between New School students and

Ajkem’a Loy’a, a women’s cooperative in Guatemala, Gatzen has taken her approach to both fashion and education abroad. “The students share their knowledge of business, marketing, and product design with the Guatemalan women. In return, the Guatemalan women teach the students beading, dyeing threads, pattern making, and weaving. The goal is for the collective to create products of their choosing and to operate without external support.”

Rithika Merchant, Frontal Blue, gouache on vellum, Fine Art

Amanda Toles and Martina Sencakova, 25 E. 13th Street, rendering, Interior Design Izzo Ahmed, Untitled, film still, Design and Technology


Beau Metting, Untitled, oil on canvas, Fine Art

Ethan Tseng, postpulp, paper-making kit with paper press, screen frame, and sawdust starter pack, Product Design Yosara Gonzalez, Things We Said, mixedmedia installation (detail), Fine Art


Duncan Smith Senior (BA/BFA Dual Degree) integrated design curriculum

Duncan Smith came to Parsons to study design and liberal arts. As a graduating senior, he has fulfilled his goal, earning a combined degree in Writing and Integrated Design Curriculum. Beautifully rendered illustrations informed by ancient Mexican art spill from the pages of his thesis project, a short graphic novel based on the true story of a Mexican worker in New York City. Duncan explains the inspiration for this project: “In my first year, I took Community Organizing at Eugene Lang College as part of my BA studies in the dual degree program, and I became entwined with a nonprofit group dedicated to workers’ rights. That’s where I met Sergio, and I modeled the main character in my graphic novel after him.” Still committed to promoting workers’ rights, Duncan continued working with the group after the class ended. He hopes that his thesis project will advance this cause by “shedding light on the working Mexican population in New York, which is often invisible.”

Even with his diploma in hand, Duncan will have no time to relax: He

has received a contract to write and illustrate a children’s book about the experiences of two Mexican cousins, one living in New York City and the other living in Mexico.

Duncan says one of the great things about Parsons is that “a lot

of professors are people in the field right now.” He plans to continue writing and illustrating, looking forward to becoming one of their peers.

Sato Masaaki, Untitled, Integrated Design Curriculum


Kenneth Chautif, Untitled, c-print, Photography



SKYPE CHAT WITH A PROFESSOR IN ANOTHER COUNTRY Parsons is a global institution; our faculty and students come from all over the world and all kinds of backgrounds.

REFERENCE TEXTS FOR AN URBAN STUDIES COURSE AT THE NEW SCHOOL Choose your liberal studies electives from some of the most interesting and innovative courses offered at any university.

SEMINAR READER FROM GLOBAL ISSUES IN DESIGN Art and Design Studies courses give you the knowledge to understand your own work in a historical/ intellectual context.

TRANSCRIPT FROM SUSTAINABLE FASHION ROUNDTABLE People at Parsons connect design decisions with larger social, economic, and cultural issues, like sustainability.

Academic Programs Parsons offers specialized training in several areas of study, but none of the programs exists in isolation from the others. Parsons provides a new kind of art and design education that constantly pushes boundaries to synthesize craft with theory, critical thinking with reflective practice, and fine arts methodologies with design applications. Students from many backgrounds study side by side, collaborate on projects, critique and influence one another’s work, and interact in every aspect of academic and campus life. They work in teams and on their own to master concepts, technologies, and research methods across a wide array of disciplines. In allowing for both specialized and hybrid paths, Parsons affords you more opportunities to define your own education and makes it possible to be a pioneer in emerging fields.

Undergraduate Degree Programs


Architectural Design—BFA


Interdisciplinary Studies

Communication Design—BFA

Art History

Interface Design

Design and Management—BBA

Broadcast Design

Lifestyle Design

Environmental Studies—BA/BS


Lighting Design

Design and Technology—BFA

Design Studies


Fashion Design—BFA

Digital Design


Fine Arts—BFA

Fashion Marketing

Product Development


Furniture Design


Integrated Design Curriculum—BFA

Graphic Design


Interior Design—BFA


Web Design


Industrial Design

Product Design—BFA

Information Design

There is an index of all areas of study on page 132. All programs of study at Parsons include a strong liberal arts component including university lecture courses required of all undergraduates at The New School and many choices of elective courses. All programs also include Art and Design Studies requirements, courses in theory, history, and criticism that provide context and insights for your studio work. All BFA programs can be combined with a bachelor of arts degree from Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts in a five-year program.


Liberal Arts Education at Parsons The New School for Design is a liberal education. Parsons is committed to turning out superior artists and designers who are also educated to be active citizens in open societies and wise human beings. Undergraduates take courses in the liberal arts and sciences for three of their four years in residence, choosing from university lecture courses and electives in the humanities, social sciences, media studies, and business. Because Parsons is a division of larger university, one with a rich heritage of innovative scholarship and cross-disciplinary inquiry, you have an exceptionally wide range of choices when it comes to fulfilling the liberal studies requirements. Because you’re sharing these courses with undergraduates from other divisions of The New School, you have opportunities to interact with students whose interests and outlooks can broaden and enrich your own thinking and goals. You can take traditional liberal arts subjects like history, literature, psychology, economics, philosophy, anthropology, creative writing, classical and contemporary music, theater, and film. Because this is The New School, you can also take courses in subjects that integrate these disciplines in new ways, such as urban studies, science and society, and culture and democracy. For students with a strong commitment to the liberal arts and an interest in exploring design as a way of thinking, understanding, and acting in the world, The New School is developing new courses of study that integrate design and the liberal arts and sciences. Beginning with the new bachelor’s program in Environmental Studies (see page 108), these innovative academic programs will capitalize on faculty expertise across the university. The university’s goal is to develop sophisticated and dynamic experts with a 21st-century way of approaching topics like community and society, urbanism and globalization, imagination and innovation. For the latest information, visit For students who wish to study both design and the liberal arts, we offer a five-year BA/BFA dual-degree program in association with Eugene Lang College The New School for liberal Arts. For more information, visit


Maya Sariahmed Sophomore communication design

Maya Sariahmed says she came to Parsons by accident. “I wasn’t considering art school. I wanted to go to a liberal arts college and get a well-rounded education. I looked into Parsons out of curiosity, and when I visited the Communication Design department, my decision was made; there was something pragmatic that appealed to me and my parents, and the energy of the staff was wonderful.”

After two years in the program, Maya knows that her decision was

the right one. “I love the broad curriculum; there’s so much I can do. I can study book or publication design, motion or spatial graphics, for example. I love art but don’t want to be pushing a portfolio in Chelsea. Communication Design is a little more practical, but it’s wonderful for whimsical, collaborative, crazy, experimental projects, too.”

Maya is particularly happy studying in New York City. “Everything

that happens in the art world seems to find its roots here, whether you’re in Dumbo investigating the Puppet Lab, strolling through the labyrinth of photo and fine art galleries in Chelsea, enjoying the murals in Harlem, or perusing the works of the masters in some of the world’s greatest museums. Art is absolutely everywhere.”

Art and Design Studies Whether you’re interested in becoming an artist, a designer, a manager, or a scholar, Parsons is the place to broaden your intellectual frame of reference. Writing, research, and critical thinking are emphasized through all four years. Art and Design Studies makes up approximately a third of the undergraduate curriculum and is an opportunity for students from across Parsons to study together. Students take a series of core courses and then choose from an array of electives in art and design theory, theory and criticism, design studies, visual studies, and fashion studies. By pairing art and design studies with related studio courses, you develop essential research, writing, and critical reasoning skills while building your own framework for intellectual and creative inquiry. Courses in art and design history, theory, and criticism provide an analytical, critical, and conceptual foundation for your studio work. They are complemented by field trips to major museums and collections. By emphasizing current academic and social issues, these courses place the exchange, production, consumption, and display of visual and material artifacts in a cross-cultural and global context. Parsons maintains the highest academic standards in our teaching and research practices. The faculty of Art and Design Studies is made up of accomplished scholars with advanced degrees from some of the best universities in the world, and visiting scholars regularly bring eye-opening perspectives to enrich the exchange of ideas.


First-Year Options In your first year at Parsons, depending on your area of interest, you can enter the Foundation program or enter directly into certain majors as a first-year student (see below). The Foundation program provides a broad education in art and design before you select a major, while the direct entry programs allow you to begin studio work in a specific design field right away. Note that, pending review and space availability, BFA students can switch majors as sophomores regardless of their first-year program, and Foundation students can choose direct-entry majors as well as majors directly supported by the Foundation program.


Four-Year Direct Entry

The Foundation program is normally the first year of study


for students who intend to major in architectural design,

Design and Management BBA Students explore design fields and related industries. They learn business principles and practices that will help them succeed as managers and entrepreneurs in today’s competitive marketplace. (See page 104.)

communication design*, fashion design, fine arts, illustration, integrated design curriculum, interior design, and product design. Studying together with students who will go on to practice a diverse array of art and design disciplines is central to the experience of foundation. These students are your future colleagues in the increasingly transdisciplinary world of design. Foundation is an educational experience that prepares you for life as an intelligent and engaged artist, designer, and citizen in today’s complex and rapidly changing world. Foundation is designed to introduce students to concepts, skills, and critical practices while preparing them to select a major. In addition to studying art and design history and theory, students take four studio courses each semester to build general skills: 2D Integrated Studio, Laboratory, 3D Studio, and Drawing Studio. In these complementary courses, students learn to identify topics of inquiry, sharpen their observations, and work in a variety of media. After the first year, entrance into a major may depend on a portfolio review by the faculty, a minimum grade point average, or both. Students are expected to complete all first-year coursework before beginning their sophomore year. * Students interested in communication design have the option of taking the Foundation program their first year or of applying for direct entry to Design and Technology and changing their major to Communication Design at the end of the first year.


Design and Technology BFA Students explore the changes in art and design brought on by digital technologies. Topics include computer systems, interface design, cognitive psychology, and animation. (See page 106.) Students who expect to focus on digital communications or animation as Communication Design majors may also apply for admission to Design and Technology as first-year students. Environmental Studies BA / BS Students study design and policy and solve environmental problems. Students can pursue the bachelor of science track at Parsons, which is project based and emphasizes sustainable design, or the bachelor of arts track at Eugene Lang College, which emphasizes social science and policy. This is a direct entry program starting fall 2009. (See page 108.) Photography BFA The curriculum provides rigorous technical training and encourages critical thinking about the place of photography in the world of art and design. (See page 120.)

Color Matters: 2D Integrated Studio, a Foundation course, provides a grounding in principles of visual expression and communication in both theoretical and applied forms. Students develop their abilities to integrate physical, photographic and digital media and processes in the creation of images, objects, and experiences.



The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Architectural Design is a four-year


pre-professional degree that prepares you for a career in

Architectural design students work in the design studio, a large open loft fully equipped with wireless digital capability. In this atelier atmosphere, you are assigned a permanent work area where you can interact freely with faculty and peers. You also have access to the latest, most innovative materials and technology in the adjacent computer printing and plotting lab, light lab, fabrication shop, and materials library.

architecture, landscape architecture, urban design, theater design, exhibition design, interior design, environmental art, or any field that demands expertise in spatial, digital, ecological, and material design. Using representational means ranging from models to full-scale material constructs to digital animation, you conceptualize and develop architectural schemes to address environmental, structural, and theoretical problems. In the design studio—the curricular, physical, and social center of the program—students work in small groups on architectural projects with design faculty. This open loft is a place to exchange ideas and interact with faculty and peers. Some of your learning takes place outside the studio, through site tours, internships, and sponsored projects. In the classroom, the studio, and beyond, you become an active member of a vibrant creative community, working alongside your peers studying interior, lighting, product, and environmental design. In your first year of study, you participate in the Parsons-wide Foundation program. You address the problem of the dynamic body in space and the environmental factors that can influence solutions. You go on to study larger-scale environments—real and virtual—and tackle issues of building, landscape, urbanism, exhibition, and theatrical design as well as independent research interests. During your senior year, you can apply to the department’s Design Workshop program, in which selected students design, develop, and construct a full-scale project under faculty supervision. For curriculum, faculty, and course information, visit and go to Degree Programs: Architectural Design, Undergraduate.




Communication Design at Parsons transcends the limits of a


traditional graphic design curriculum, encompassing everything


from typography to complex information mapping. Study of the

First offered in 1906, Communication Design is one of the oldest programs of study at Parsons as well as the field that has experienced the most dramatic changes over the past century. These changes have resulted from technological advances and, more fundamentally, from expanding notions of what constitutes “communication.”

social and cultural ramifications of all facets of communication enables you to create meaning and value through media. There is no better place to enter this field than New York City. From start-up studios downtown to the global firms of midtown, this is where magazines, advertising, film and television, graphics, exhibitions, and websites are designed. At every point in the creative process, you are encouraged to apply what you learn to real-world collaborative projects, internships, and work experience. The program is flexible, giving you the freedom to develop your own course of study. You can choose electives from a wide range of offerings at Parsons and The New School’s other divisions—far more choices than are available at more traditional design institutions. State-of-the-art facilities enable you to bring your ideas to life. You have access to specialized computing facilities, printmaking and letterpress shops, fabrication workshops, and 2D and 3D printers. Upon graduation, you are qualified to pursue a career in a field such as advertising, motion and broadcast graphics, book and magazine design, package design, corporate branding and identity, information visualization, interactive design, exhibition and retail design, architectural and environmental graphics, or apparel design, to name just a few possibilities. For curriculum, faculty, and course information, visit and go to Degree Programs: Communication Design.




In the Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) program in Design


and Management, you explore design fields while completing

Students explore a variety of design fields and learn to use design as a tool for change, for example in the field of environmental sustainability. In Senior Seminar and Thesis classes, students work independently on case studies, which include a project brief, poster, website, oral or digital presentation, and formal paper. These final projects allow students to display original thinking backed by solid research. Past project topics include designing a street fashion website, accessing clean water in Haiti, improving the subway rider’s experience, and addressing the issue of student credit card debt.

an interdisciplinary program in business management. You nurture your creative, artistic, and innovative side while developing a head for business. The diversity of course offerings and nonlinear format of the program enable you to design your own education. Core courses in management, design, and liberal arts anchor your studies. Through courses at other schools in the university, you learn how design can be a catalyst for social change; for example, the university’s environmentally conscious programs could help you land a job in the growing “green” workforce. New York City serves as your laboratory. Field trips, events, and internships introduce you to the business of design in the city’s most prestigious organizations. Faculty members hail from some of the world’s top companies; you learn firsthand from leading architects, computer programmers, and business professionals. The program helps you secure internships for credit. Recent partners include Bloomingdale’s, Chanel Inc., Donna Karan New York, Gucci, Harper’s Bazaar, and Marc by Marc Jacobs. You begin by exploring the integrated world of business and design and leave prepared to market design that is useful, beautiful, and sustainable. Graduates enter a variety of careers, including brand strategy, public relations, advertising, marketing, events management, and retail buying. Design and Management is a four-year program. Apply for direct entry (see page 130). For curriculum, faculty, and course information, visit and go to Degree Programs: Design and Management.




As a Design and Technology major, you discover that there is no


such thing as an abstract idea. You’re challenged to examine

The Design and Technology program encourages students to engage the community through symposia, game jams, simulations, and mobile technology events. Parsons provides a place to test prototypes and connects students with scholars and designers in digital media, education, and social research. Most recently, the department has collaborated with Games for Change to launch PETLab, the first publicinterest game design and research laboratory for interactive media. Other industry and organizational partners include AIGA, Apple, Atari, CooperHewitt/Smithsonian, Creative Time, Curious Pictures, Eyebeam, gameLab, Human Rights Watch, Microsoft, MTV, NASA, the New Museum, the Open Society Institute, Samsung, Siemens, SensAble Technologies, UNESCO, and UNICEF.

current applications of technology and devise new solutions to technological problems. In the course of your studies, you gain a broad understanding of how technology can drive social, political, and cultural change. Design and Technology defies simple definition. Unlike more traditional design disciplines, it exposes you to emerging design and art practices, including data programming, digital filmmaking, game design, motion graphics, physical computing, and documentary media. You develop your creative potential by working on real-world projects. The department’s lab becomes your virtual playground, a hub of creativity and collaboration, where you explore ideas with peers and put them into action, creating relationships that survive long past graduation. All this takes place in New York City, home to worlds of cultures and a center of communications. From Wi-Fi hotspots created at a neighborhood park to animations projected on the side of a building, your work can become a living, breathing part of the city. As a graduate, you can pursue a career in an area such as interactive media, film and television, motion graphics, animation, game design, product development, graphic design, advertising, and the fine arts. Design and Technology is a four-year program. Apply for direct entry. (see page 130). For curriculum, faculty, and course information, visit and go to Degree Programs: Design and Technology, Undergraduate.




In the coming decades, sustainability and the urban ecosystem will


be among the most important areas of environmental study. By the

Students pursuing an environmental studies degree use New York City and the surrounding region as their laboratory. You apply what you learn in the classroom to real-world problems through fieldwork with local organizations, government agencies, and businesses. You work with leading environmental professionals to design experiments, collect data, develop prototypes, and implement projects that address urgent urban environmental problems. Fieldwork in the second or third year forms the basis for a senior project. Recent fieldwork has taken students to the marshes of Jamaica Bay, green roofs in the South Bronx, and the banks of the Hudson River.

year 2025, most of the world’s population will live, work, and play in metropolitan areas like New York City. The Environmental Studies program focuses on the urban ecosystem and all its components. Consider water, our most valuable resource. How can we provide clean water to millions while ensuring adequate supplies for industry, transportation, power generation, agriculture, and wildlife? How can we understand water without understanding politics, management, ecology, economics, and chemistry? Then there is the fact that our actions today forge a path upon which future generations must travel. Will that path be a sustainable one, improving life for our descendents? What is our ability and responsibility to plan for the future? How should environmental practices be changed to ensure fairness and equity? By integrating design with policy making, management, economics, and science, we can devise creative solutions to urgent environmental problems. Here in New York, one of the most complex urban ecosystems on earth, The New School has a living laboratory for the study of environment and sustainability. Our outstanding faculty in social science, urban policy and management, and the natural sciences, work with their design colleagues at Parsons to find creative approaches to teaching and research. Environmental Studies is a four-year program. Apply for direct entry (see page 130). For curriculum, faculty, and admission requirements, visit * Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science.




Fashion design today encompasses much more than the creation


of clothing and accessories. Parsons trains you to be a complete

In 1906, Parsons launched the first program in fashion design in the United States. The history of the department is intertwined with the rise of Seventh Avenue as the center of the fashion industry. Today, roughly 70 percent of the fashion design talent in New York is Parsons educated.

designer, ready to face the challenges of designing in the 21st century. You evaluate design through societal, cultural, historical, and economic lenses developed through interdisciplinary study. You develop content and context in your work and an understanding of its relevancy in today’s world. The program includes core courses in design concepts, studio methods, and fashion drawing that complement and build on one another. Courses in business, merchandising, fashion history, and digital design prepare you for a career as a designer. You explore a variety of methods to create collections and build technical skills. You broaden your design knowledge and vocabulary. In New York City, the world center of fashion, you learn from top designers in the industry. You receive instruction from faculty members active in the industry and from guest lecturers and critics at the top of the field. The junior-level Designer Critic program offers mentorship opportunities with professionals. The Senior Thesis Review and the Parsons Benefit and Fashion Show, which feature a selection of the best senior work, are both attended by fashion industry leaders. Through internships, you get firsthand experience with design leaders. Upon graduation, you are ready to study at the graduate level or to enter the world of fashion in areas like assistant design, costume design, accessory design, marketing, merchandising, styling, curatorial work, and interior design. You join the legions of alumni before you who are changing the world through fashion design. For curriculum, faculty, and course information, visit the website at and go to Degree Programs: Fashion Design.


Parsons’ five generations of fashion design alumni include legends such as Claire McCardell, Adrian, and Norman Norell; current leaders Donna Karan, Tom Ford, Marc Jacobs, Anna Sui, Isaac Mizrahi, Narciso Rodriguez, Mark Badgley and James Mischka, and Zang Toi; and new stars Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez (Proenza Schouler), Behnaz Sarafpour, Peter Som, Doo Ri, Derek Lam, Chris Benz, Sophie Buhai and Lisa Mayock (Vena Cava), and Flora Gill and Alexa Adams (Ohne Titel).



Art making today extends far beyond the traditional disciplines of painting, drawing, and sculpture. Influenced by avant-garde post-war art movements, many artists appropriate, incorporate, and interpret images from the media and popular culture to make politically charged statements, while others repurpose materials and ideas from everyday life to challenge our notions of what art is. It takes courage and a clear sense of direction to make art in this context of extreme possibility. Parsons’ Fine Arts program offers you the guidance and resources you need to discover your own voice. The program gives you exposure to a wide array of studio practices, contemporary art ideas, and community and global relationships. You experiment and explore ideas while developing your ability to think visually and critically. You learn to translate ideas into individual expression using drawing, color, form, space, structure, composition, and materials. You acquire a solid understanding of artists’ tools and media. Interdisciplinary courses in art history and liberal studies broaden your appreciation of the cultural, historical, and intellectual contexts in which art is made. Presentations by visiting artists show you what it’s like to be an artist today, and visiting critics and regular trips to the city’s renowned museums and galleries offer insight into both the art of the past and the contemporary art world. In your senior year, a professional practices course (Theory, Practice, and Career) prepares you for the transition from school to a career as a professional artist. Alumni have placed in highly prestigious exhibitions, such as the Whitney Biennial. For curriculum, faculty, and course information, visit and go to Degree Programs: Fine Arts, Undergraduate.


The Fine Arts Program’s weekly lecture series features prominent artists and critics who discuss their current practices in relationship to larger trends in contemporary culture. Students have the opportunity to learn about a wide range of artistic practices through post-lecture dialogue with the visitors.

Visiting Artists LECTURE SERIES, SPRING 2009 Sanford Biggers Eduardo Cadava Alfredo Jaar Emily Jacir Silvia Kolbowski Thomas Y. Levin Wangechi Mutu Paul Pfeiffer Rebecca Quaytman / Orchard Paul Ramirez-Jonas Shazia Sikander Saya Woolfalk



The Illustration program is distinguished by its emphasis on


narrative and authorship. You tell stories and create meaning

Illustration students learn from some of the best visual communicators in the world.

and messages with images and words. Through studio and digital coursework, you develop proficiency in drawing and media-based skills, originality in problem solving, knowledge of art and design history, awareness of current social and cultural concerns, and mastery of technological tools and software. You also have access to all the facilities Parsons has to offer, including a department library and screening room. Perhaps the most valuable resource available to you is our outstanding faculty, which includes some of the best visual communicators working today. You can take courses not only in other departments at Parsons but across the university, giving your education context and depth. You draw inspiration from New York City’s cultural and creative institutions and can receive credit for working with companies such as Design Within Reach, Bond #9, and Brooklyn Industries. Throughout your course of study, you find and shape your creative voice and hone your drawing and design skills. When you graduate, you’ll be prepared to pursue a variety of career paths, including editorial illustration, cartooning, toy design, animation, children’s book illustration, fine art, graphic design, textile and surface design, typography, and Web design. For curriculum, faculty, and course information, visit and go to Degree Programs: Illustration.


Ben Katchor, an award-winning illustrator, is a new associate professor. His musical, The Slug Bearers of Kayrol Island, recently received glowing reviews in the New York Times. His picture-stories and drawings appear in the New Yorker, Metropolis Magazine, and The Forward. Katchor’s weekly strips include Julius Knipl; Real Estate Photographer; The Jew of New York; and The Cardboard Valise. Tara McPherson is a painter, poster artist, and freelance illustrator. Her art includes comics and covers for DC Vertigo, illustrations for companies such as Pepsi and Spin Magazine, and posters for rock bands such as Beck, Modest Mouse, Mastodon, and Death Cab for Cutie. Nora Krug’s work as an illustrator, animator, and visual narrator has appeared in publications such as the New York Times, the Guardian, Playboy, BLAB!, and Le monde diplomatique. She has exhibited her work in Europe, the United States, and Asia and her animated Internet project was recognized by the New York Art Directors Club.



In the Integrated Design Curriculum (IDC), you design your own


curriculum by integrating studies in various disciplines of design,

In IDC you choose an area of study to frame your experiences, but coursework and discussions cross over into the other areas of study, deepening your knowledge base.

the liberal arts, performance, and entrepreneurship. As part of your program, you choose an area of study (AoS) that frames your interests and, together with your AoS academic advisor, create a curriculum that draws from all the curricula of Parsons and the rest of the university. The core studios are the essence of IDC. Core courses expose you to real-life situations, often through external partnerships. You work on projects that respond to cultural, economic, political, and environmental problems. The IDC Lab provides you with valuable skills and methodological and practical knowledge. As you progress from freshman to senior year, you face increasingly complex issues and environments. Parsons and The New School are located in the heart of the spectacular urban laboratory of New York City. The city serves as your extended classroom, and every IDC course involves field research, collaborations, exhibitions, or other interactions with the city. Upon graduation, you are ready to enter a variety of design careers or continue on to graduate study. IDC graduates often start their own innovative design businesses. For curriculum, faculty, and course information, visit and go to Degree Programs: Integrated Design Curriculum.


Areas of study in IDC I ntegrative Fashion Curriculum Students rethink, critique, and reframe current fashion system and design with in a variety of media, from garments, to images, to writing. Integrative Urban Curriculum Students experiment with notions of liberty, agency, citizenship, social entrepreneurship, and design action in relation to cities, urban environments, and the condition of urbanity. Integrative Sustainability Curriculum Students research the sustainability of social and natural environments and leverage design to make them more ecologically resilient and robust. Integrative Service Curriculum Students explore the way in which our societies are becoming increasingly service based, reshaping notions of ownership, experience, and quality as well as exploring how services can be designed to address social and environmental issues by designing interactions involving people, environments, communications, and products.



In 1906, Frank Alvah Parsons established the first academic


interior design program in the United States. One hundred years

Combined with a professional apprenticeship, this degree qualifies you for the NCIDQ  professional licensing examination. For students looking to extend their studies, the program also provides excellent preparation for Parsons’ MFA in Interior Design and other graduate and research degrees. Graduates pursue careers in residential, contract-commercial, and hospitality design; design management; design journalism; and education.

later, as the very concept of what constitutes an interior is debated, Parsons remains the leading school for interior design education for students around the world. The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design prepares you for a career in an increasingly complex field embracing everything from furniture to buildingscale environments. Working with an acclaimed faculty of top professional designers, you learn to conceive and develop interior designs, using representational means ranging from models to full-scale material constructs and digital animations. In the design studio, Interior Design students work in small groups with faculty. The studio is an open loft space with wireless digital capability, immediate access to research and fabrication facilities, and a dedicated work area for each student. It is a place where students can interact and exchange ideas with faculty and peers. You enter the Interior Design major after completing the foundation year. During your senior year, you can apply to take the Design Workshop, in which selected students design, develop, and construct a full-scale project under faculty supervision. For curriculum, faculty, and course information, visit and go to Degree Programs: Interior Design, Undergraduate.




The BFA Photography program integrates theory and practice.


Starting in your freshman year, you develop technical and critical

Over the past six years, Parsons has produced six Surface Avant Guardians and four Fulbright scholars. Students have also appeared in the Photo District News 30, a list of notable up-andcoming photographers. Ryan McGinley, a recent graduate, received the Young Photographer Infinity Award from the International Center of Photography and was the youngest artist to have a solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art.

skills by exploring forms of technology and genres of photography in the core curriculum and the wide range of electives available to you. As a Photography major, you are encouraged to explore the cultural riches of New York City. Your course assignments require you to visit galleries, museums, and lectures featuring world-class talent both on and off campus. The Parsons faculty, artists of diverse talents, accomplishments, and backgrounds, exposes you to a variety of possible careers in fine art, editorial, and advertising photography or as a photo editor, photo agent, or producer in publishing. You work with both analog and digital media. You can take courses in other divisions of The New School, which offers an eclectic, vital, and relevant education. The program offers tracks that allow you to focus on a specific field. In the fashion track, for example, you can work in professional studios and partner with models, make-up artists, and clothing designers. You gain the breadth of knowledge, technical ability, and cultural awareness you need to excel in all genres of photography. Photography is a four-year program. Apply for direct entry (see page 130). For curriculum, faculty, and course information, visit and go to Degree Programs: Photography, Undergraduate.




Product Design prepares you for a variety of professional careers.


As a student, you use the latest technologies and materials to

Every Product Design student examines the designer’s role in improving people’s lives. An investigation of the impact of design on communities, A Good Life is a synthesis of departmental themes of the last decade. In this course you sharpen your ideas and get real-world client input by working with nonprofit organizations in New York to develop design projects that address their missions. The work of the department sees a world made better through design.

create functional consumer products. You are introduced to a variety of methodologies and the history of product design and master the fundamentals of computers, machinery, and tools as well as presentation and research techniques. You learn how products are conceived, developed, fabricated, and marketed and develop an awareness of New York City as a professional and cultural resource. The department provides real-world contexts to your academic work by focusing on the role product design plays in fostering the good life (see sidebar). You analyze the impact of products on culture, society, and the environment. You study a product’s life cycle, develop marketing strategies, and assess its potential effect on scales ranging from the local to the global. Starting with a core curriculum and choosing from a diverse menu of electives, you work with an advisor to create a balanced program that covers design issues such as user-centered design, sustainability, responsiveness to special needs, industrysponsored product development, architectural and virtual interfaces, mass-market product design, and lighting. You take part in competitions, internships, collaborations, and study abroad—experiences that build a foundation for your career. For curriculum, faculty, and course information, visit and go to Degree Programs: Product Design.



A Brief Guide to


Parsons The New School for Design

Parsons offers the following degree programs:

Parsons prepares students to be independent thinkers who creatively and critically address the complex human conditions of 21st-century culture. We are creating a diverse learning environment for developing intelligent and reflective practices through studio-based research and critical scholarship in order to make meaningful and sustainable contributions today’s global society. As a division of The New School, Parsons builds on the university’s legacy of progressive ideals, scholarship, and educational methods. Our faculty challenges convention through a setting and philosophy that encourages formal experimentation, nurtures alternative world-views, and cultivates forward-thinking leaders and creative professionals in a world increasingly influenced by art and design. The New School was founded in 1919 as “center for discussion, instruction, and counseling for mature men and women.” It is today a thriving urban university offering undergraduate and graduate degrees in the liberal arts and social sciences, design, and the performing arts. It is a privately supported university chartered by the Board of Regents of the State of New York, and its degree and certificate programs are approved by the state’s Division of Veterans Affairs. The New School is accredited by the Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools. Parsons The New School for Design is additionally accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design, and the graduate program in architecture is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board. Facts about Parsons

Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in: Architectural Design, Communication Design, Design and Technology, Fashion Design, Fine Arts, Illustration, Integrated Design, Interior Design, Photography, and Product Design. (There is a five-year BA/BFA dual degree program in each of these areas of study; speak to an admission counselor about the dual degree program.) Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Design and Management. Bachelor of Science (BS) in Environmental Studies and BA/BFA . Associate in Applied Science (AAS) in: Fashion Marketing, Fashion Design, Graphic Design, and Interior Design. Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in: Design and Technology, Lighting Design, Interior Design,* Fine Arts, and Photography. Master of Architecture (MArch). Master of Arts (MA) in History of Decorative Arts and Design. Master of Architecture/Master of Fine Arts in Lighting Design (MArch/MFA). The following master’s degree programs are in development: Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in: Fashion Design and Society,* and Transdisciplinary Design.* Master of Arts (MA) in Fashion Studies.*

—Founded in 1896 by New York City artist William Merritt Chase and associates.

Master of Science (MS) in Design Management.*

—Named in 1936 for longtime president Frank Alvah Parsons, who devoted his life to integrating visual art and industrial design.

Parsons offers a variety of programs for nonmatriculated students of all ages: Summer Intensive Studies (pre-college and college-level) in New York City and Paris; Continuing Education (certificate programs and general art and design education for adults); Parsons Pre-College Academy (certificate programs and general art and design education for young people, grades 4–12).

—Became a division of The New School in 1970. Located in Greenwich Village, New York City. —Current enrollments: Parsons enrolls nearly 4,000 students in its undergraduate and undergraduate degree programs. The New School as a whole enrolls nearly 10,000 matriculated students. —The Parsons faculty includes more than 125 full-time and 1,000 part-time members respectively. The majority of faculty members are working professional artists and designers.


Other Academic Programs

Visit the website at for more information. * New York State approval pending.

Institutional information

Student Financial Services

The New School is committed to creating and maintaining an environment of diversity and tolerance in all areas of employment, education, and access to its educational, artistic, and cultural programs and activities. The New School does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, color, sex, sexual orientation, religion, mental or physical disability, national or ethnic origin, or citizenship, marital, or veteran status.

The New School provides a comprehensive program of financial aid services for students, including significant institutional scholarship support based on merit and need. All applicants who file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) will be considered for Parsons institutional scholarships. The New School participates in all available federal and state aid programs, including the Federal Pell Grant, Equal Opportunity Grant, Federal Academic Competitiveness Grant, and Federal Family Educational Loan programs.

Institutional Information on the Web

The New School provides the following institutional information on the university website at www.newschool. edu: Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA); financial assistance information (federal, state, local, private, and institutional need-based and non-need-based assistance programs, Title IV, FFEL, Direct Loan deferments); institutional information (fees, refund policies, withdrawing from school, academic information, disability services for students); completion/graduation rates and transfer-out rates (graduation rate of degree-seeking students, transfer-out rates of degreeseeking students). To request copies of any of these reports, please contact the appropriate office listed on the website. Financial information

Estimated School-Year Expenses, 2009–10 Academic Year (Full-time on-campus resident) Tuition (undergraduate)*................................................$35,220 University Services Fee..........................................................200 Divisional Fee..........................................................................80 Student Senate Fee.................................................................. 10 Health Services Fee**.............................................................500 Health Insurance Fee**........................................................ 1,714 Room and Board***............................................................15,260 Books and Supplies***........................................................ 2,050 Personal Expenses***...........................................................1,550 Transportation...................................................................... 684 Other...................................................................................... 190 Total ................................................................................ $57,268 * For BFA programs.

Visit to learn how to apply for financial aid and more about scholarships, loans, campus employment, and other resources. The office of Student Financial Services works with students and families of all income levels to explore their funding options. Contact Student Financial Services directly at 212.229.8930 or Note: The New School offers a monthly plan that allows families to spread tuition payments throughout the year. For more information on payments and payment arrangements, visit the Student Financial Services website at

Chase Scholars First-year applicants with exceptional academic achievement are eligible for this program of accelerated Art and Design courses, which carries with it a supplemental scholarship award. Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP) The Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP) offers support to residents of New York State whose family incomes meet guidelines established by the State Department of Education and whose college success may not be readily predictable through high school grades and standardized test scores. Candidates for HEOP assistance must exhibit the exceptional art and design talent expected of all Parsons students. For more information, send email to or call The New School at 212.229.8996.

**All full-time matriculated students are automatically charged a Student Health Insurance Fee and a Student Health Services Fee. Students covered by other insurance can decline these services by submitting a waiver form. ***Actual costs may vary widely for individuals.



Apply online at Parsons seeks serious, responsible, and highly motivated students. There is no admission formula, and every applicant is reviewed individually with regard to his or her experience, achievements, and potential for personal growth at Parsons The New School for Design. The admission committee recognizes the benefits of strong artistic preparation, but some applicants are admitted based on their academic achievements despite limited art or design experience. The admissions information in this brochure is for applicants to bachelor’s degree programs at Parsons The New School for Design in New York City.* Complete information about admission criteria and required documents, admission status and transfer admissions, and credit and course requirements for different degree programs is available on the Web at Summary information is provided below. Address inquiries to

Parsons The New School for Design University Admission (Parsons Undergraduate Programs) 72 Fifth Avenue New York, NY 10011 Telephone 212.229.5150 or 877.528.3321 (toll-free in the U.S.) Email

Frequently Asked Questions

I am a student at another college. Can I transfer to Parsons as a sophomore or junior? To be admitted as a sophomore or junior, you must have earned the studio art credits equivalent to the requirements of the first year(s) of the Parsons program to which you are applying. If you do not have the right studio credits, you can transfer in at a lower level regardless of your previous college experience. In any case, your liberal arts credits should be transferable if you received acceptable grades. Note: Junior-level transfers are not permitted in Fashion Design. I am an international applicant. How do I get an I-20 form? I-20 forms are provided only after an applicant has been accepted to a degree program (BFA, BBA, BS, MFA, MA, AAS). Parsons does not issue I-20 forms for nonmatriculating, continuing education, or certificate students. Can I take individual courses or enroll part-time? Parsons degree program courses are open only to full-time matriculated students. Students wishing to take individual classes at Parsons can register for continuing education courses. For more information, visit *Parsons Paris is a separate institution with its own programs and admission policies. For information about Parsons Paris, email, or write to Parsons Paris, 14 rue Letellier, 75015 Paris, France.


How many students attend Parsons? Parsons enrolls about 3,200 undergraduate students. Studio classes are usually limited to 15 students, and Art and Design Studies classes are usually limited to 20 students. Does Parsons offer career services? The office of career services directly supports students seeking industry employment and offers comprehensive career guidance. Application Deadlines

February 1 for fall admission for freshman applicants. This is the priority deadline for students who wish to be considered for university housing or scholarships. However, all applicants are urged to submit complete applications by this date. After the priority deadline has passed, applications received will be considered only if space is available. April 1 for fall admission for transfer sophomore and junior applicants. All applicants are urged to submit complete applications by this date. November 1 for early action for freshman fall applications. All application materials must be received by November 1. A decision letter will be mailed at the end of December. Incomplete applications will be rolled to the February 1 deadline. On occasion, the Admission Committee may decide to hold off on a decision in order to review further information. The application will be reviewed a second time amongst the general pool of applications. November 1 for spring admission. Students wishing to enter Parsons in the spring semester (see Transfer Students below) must submit all application materials by this date. If all required materials are not submitted or postmarked by November 1, applications received will be considered only if space is available. Application Procedures

All applications must be made using the online application form. The form and complete instructions are found on the website at Please read the instructions carefully before you apply. The application may be submitted online or downloaded and mailed to the office of admission. All documents and artwork not being submitted online should be mailed together in one package to the address above. Always use the materials cover sheet posted in the Apply section of the website. Fill it out completely and itemize everything you are submitting. Admission Decisions —Freshmen applicants that apply by the priority deadline of February 1 will receive their decision in the mail by April 1 and rolling. —Transfer applicants that apply by the priority deadline of April 1 will receive their decision in the mail by May 1 and rolling.

Required Application Support Materials

Transcripts Official high school and college transcripts must be sent to University Admissions; see address above. Copies are not acceptable. If a transfer applicant has completed less than 24 college credits, an official high school transcript will be mandatory. International students must submit original transcripts; a certified English translation if a transcript was recorded in a language other than English; and a course-by-course evaluation report prepared by World Education Services,, or another member of the National Association of Evaluation Services (NACES). If filing with WES online, search for New School Parsons. Transcripts should be sent for evaluation as soon as possible so that Parsons will receive the evaluation reports prior to the application deadline. Test Scores SAT or ACT scores are required of all applicants currently enrolled in U.S. high schools. Applicants who are not native speakers of English must submit a TOEFL score*; a minimum score of 580 on the paper test, 237 on the computer test, or 92 on the Internet-based test is required for an applicant to be considered (600, 250, or 100 for Environmental Studies). *Waiving the TOEFL Requirement: The New School for General Studies offers intensive courses and a certificate in English as a second language. Many international students take these courses to prepare for academic studies or professional work in the United States. Parsons applicants who pass Level Six (6) of the New School ESL courses may waive the TOEFL exam requirement. For general information, current course schedules, and fees, visit the website at

The Parsons Challenge All applicants must complete the Parsons Challenge. This exercise helps the admission committee understand how a potential student structures and conveys ideas. —Where do you live? What are your everyday activities? Where do you go? What have you overlooked? Look around your community and discover something new within your familiar surroundings and daily life—an object, event, activity, or location. —Interpret your discovery in three (3) perspectives in any medium and three (3) statements of approximately 150 words each. You may proceed from image to text or text to image. Each interpretation should represent a different point of view. —Visual media may include drawing, photography, video, sculpture, 3D work, collage, digital images or any combination of the above. Each written statement should explore your creative and imaginative process and support the visual work in both form and content. All images and texts must be clearly identified with your name and date of birth.

Portfolio (BFA applicants) 8–12 additional examples of art or design work such as but not limited to drawing, painting, photographs, and digital media. There are special portfolio requirements for students applying for direct-entry to Design and Technology and Photography programs; see First Year status on the following page. See Visit Parsons on the last page of this brochure for information about portfolio preparation workshops and review sessions at Parsons. Required essay (Design and Management BBA applicants) In an essay of 500–550 words, describe a situation in which you combined creativity and analysis to solve a challenging problem. The problem you describe could be personal, social, political, environmental, or something very different. The admission committee is more interested in your process or method in considering the problem than whether you reached a complete solution. Required essay (Environmental Studies BS applicants) In an essay of 500–550 words, discuss a major environmental challenge facing a large urban area, such as New York, Los Angeles, Mexico City, London, etc., and propose a solution focusing on design and sustainability. Personal Interview An interview is optional but recommended. An application must be submitted prior to scheduling an interview. To schedule an interview, call 212.229.8989; your New School ID number, issued when enrollment services received your application, must be given when scheduling an interview. EARLY ADMISSION FOR HIGH SCHOOL JUNIORS

A limited number of students may be admitted to the first-year Foundation Program after completing the junior year of high school. If you are applying for early admission, you must provide a letter from your high school authorizing the Parsons Foundation Program to be substituted for your senior year of high school. You may submit PSAT scores if SAT or ACT scores are unavailable. CONDITIONAL ADMISSION

In some circumstances, Parsons may admit an applicant subject to conditions as described below. Summer Program as a Condition for Admission The committee may admit an applicant on the condition that he or she successfully complete a Parsons summer program to make up an academic or portfolio deficiency. This is determined at the time of the admission committee’s initial review so that applicants will receive notification with ample time to make plans for the summer. The admission committee will provide information about these programs if appropriate. Probation A student may be admitted on probation due to weak academic performance as indicated on transcripts. Details about probationary admission will be included in the decision letters sent to applicants accepted under such conditions


Summer Orientation Program for International Students (SOPIS) Students whose artistic and academic skills warrant admission but whose weak English-language skills disqualify them, may be offered the eight-week SOPIS program as a condition of admission. Placement in this program is solely at the discretion of the admission committee. The admission committee will provide information about these programs if appropriate. CHOOSING A PROGRAM

Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) Four-year program; 134 credits, including 92 studio credits; prepares students for art and design professions and/or graduate studies. Most BFA applicants enter the first-year Foundation Program before choosing a major, but some programs of study permit students to enter directly into their major field of study directly (see First Year options).


Applicants are encouraged to enter certain programs directly as freshman. Otherwise, students enter into the Foundation program their first year. Design and Technology (BFA) Direct Entry The focus of this program is computer systems, interface design, robotics, animation, and communication media design. While expertise in digital technologies is not a prerequisite for admission, applicants should include in their portfolios art or design work that highlights experience with digital media and technology. Students who expect to major in Communication Design have the option of taking the Foundation program or applying for direct entry to Design and Technology and declaring a Communication Design major at the end of the first year.

BA/BFA Parsons and Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts jointly offer a five-year curriculum permitting simultaneous completion of both the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree (90 credits) and a Bachelor of Arts degree (90 credits). More information and the special BA/BFA application form can be found at, or contact the office of admission at either Parsons or at Eugene Lang College.

Photography (BFA) Direct Entry Applicants for should submit a portfolio that emphasizes black & white and color photography and demonstrates both processing skills and conceptual solutions, preferably images personally developed and printed by the applicant. Applicants must identify for each photograph the process used to make the image (traditional film and photographic paper or digital camera, software, and digital printer) and which parts of the production process were done by the applicant.

Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Design and Management Four-year program, 134 credits, including finance, accounting, and studio credits; prepares students for careers in designrelated business management and marketing. This is a directentry program.

Environmental Studies (BS) and Design and Management (BBA) Direct Entry Visit the websites ( studies or or speak to an admission counselor about particular application requirements for these two direct entry programs.

Bachelor of Science (BS) in Environmental Studies Four-year program, 120 credits; prepares students for environmental design careers or graduate studies in two concentrations, sustainable design and urban ecosystems design. This is a direct-entry program. The New School also offers a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies; visit for more information about this new cross-disciplinary program.

Foundation Program This program introduces students to a broad range of concepts, skills, and critical issues in art and design practice before they declare a major. It is normally the first year of study for students who expect to major in architectural design, communication design,* fashion design, fine arts, illustration, integrated design curriculum, interior design, or product design. Portfolios of Foundation applicants can include work such as drawing, painting, photography, or digital media. *Students who intend to major in Communication Design have the option of applying to the Design and Technology direct-entry program.



See Transfer Students information below: spring admissions are limited and always require specific prior course work at Parsons or another accredited institution. The following programs allow spring entry: Architectural Design (second-semester sophomore); Foundation (freshman transfer); Communication Design (sophomore); Design and Technology (freshman transfer or second-semester sophomore); Fine Arts (second-semester sophomore); Illustration (sophomore); Interior Design (second semester sophomore); and Photography (freshman transfer or second-semester sophomore). If the program you wish to enter does not admit new students in the spring, or if you do not have the appropriate prior course work, you can apply for the Foundation Program as a freshman transfer student or else apply for the next fall semester. The portfolio work of transfer applicants must be equivalent to that of Parsons students at the same level. If you have questions, please contact the office of admission. TRANSFER STUDENTS

Residency Requirement Parsons has a two-year residency requirement for all undergraduate degree programs. A maximum of 67 credits earned elsewhere can be applied toward a Parsons degree. Transfer students may receive credit for college courses completed elsewhere that are similar to those offered at Parsons, based on assessment of official transcripts. A grade of C or better must have been awarded for a course to be considered. Credit will be transferred for studio if the applicant’s portfolio materials demonstrate proficiency in the skills for which credit is sought. Courses considered for transfer credit must have been taken at an institution accredited by a state or regional accrediting association or by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design. Transfer credit will be accepted only in 12-credit (equivalent semester) blocks. No credit will be granted for life experience. Students who have earned a French baccalaureate, a German Abitur, or an International Baccalaureate diploma, or who have passed equivalent European university qualifying examinations, will be considered for appropriate transfer credits based on those academic credentials. Foundation Year Spring Semester Transfer If you have previously completed the equivalent of the required first-semester studio credits, you can enter the Foundation Program in the spring as a second-semester student. Sophomore and Junior Year Transfers Transfer students who apply for direct entry into a particular program but are deemed to lack fundamental skills, or otherwise are not ready to declare a major, will be directed to apply for the Foundation Program. Transfer students

seeking admission at the sophomore or junior level to the BBA program in Design and Management must have completed college course work equivalent to the courses in the Parsons BBA curriculum. Junior-level transfers are not permitted into the Fashion Design program. Notification of Transfer Credit Awards Before accepting a transfer application, an admissions counselor should estimate the credits likely to be accepted by Parsons. However, actual transfer credits are awarded only after an applicant has been admitted and all final transcripts have been reviewed by the admission committee. All transfer applicants may schedule appointments with an academic advisor prior to or during the beginning-of-term registration period for in-person review of transfer credit awards. Advanced Placement Examinations

Advanced Placement scores may be submitted by accepted students for credit as follows. Academic Subjects score of 4 or 5: credit may be awarded for liberal arts electives or for certain required courses in the Art and Design Studies curriculum; Art History score of 4 or 5: exemption may be granted from required first-year survey courses, but credit points will not be granted; students can take intermediate and advanced art history courses to satisfy degree requirements. Studio Art: due to the integral nature of the studio curricula at Parsons, Advanced Placement scores cannot replace required studio courses.

follow us online The information published here represents the plans of The New School at the time of publication. The university reserves the right to change without notice any matter contained in this publication, including but not limited to tuition, fees, policies, degree programs, names of programs, course offerings, academic activities, academic requirements, facilities, faculty, and administrators. Payment of tuition or attendance at any classes shall constitute a student’s acceptance of the administration’s rights as set forth above. Published 2009 by Parsons The New School for Design Produced by Communications and External Affairs, The New School Design: mgmt. design Photography: Portraits by Matthew Septimus; cover and section dividers by Matthew Sussman; photographs of student work by Caitlin Benedetto, Jeff Brown, John Roach.


Visit Parsons

Visit us in New York City, or meet our admission counselors at portfolio reviews where Found objects in Parsons studios you live.collected information, For more (material samples, tools, reference documents, process artifacts) and samples of student and Information faculty work. Collage Sessions by mgmt. design.

go to

Take part in one of our general information sessions, where you can meet with counselors to discuss Parsons’ study options and receive instructions on portfolio preparation. Tours

Sign up for a tour of the school. Tours must be scheduled well in advance to ensure accommodation. For more information, go to National Portfolio Days

Representatives from Parsons attend National Portfolio Days throughout the country to meet prospective students and offer advice on preparing portfolios. For more information, visit and go to Parsons on the Road. Portfolio Preparation Workshop

Learn about preparing a successful portfolio from members of the Admission Committee at our Portfolio Preparation Workshops (artwork will not be reviewed at these sessions). Go to to reserve a space. Portfolio Review Sessions

Take advantage of these opportunities to receive guidance on your artwork as you prepare your portfolio for admission to schools of art and design. Go to to reserve a space. International Events

Representatives from Parsons participate in events internationally. For complete details, go to


Animation, 106, 114

Fashion Design, 110

Interior Design, 118

Architecture, 100

Fashion Marketing, 104

Lifestyle Design, 122

Art History, 97

Fine Arts, 112

Lighting Design, 122

Broadcast Design, 102, 106

Furniture Design, 122

Management, 104

Business, 104

Graphic Design, 102

Painting, 112

Communication Design, 102

Illustration, 114

Photography, 120

Design and Management, 104

Industrial Design, 122

Product Design, 122

Design and Technology, 106

Information Design, 102

Product Development, 104

Design Studies, 97

Integrated Design, 116

Robotics, 106

Digital Design, 102, 106

Interdisciplinary Studies, 116

Sculpture, 112

Environmental Studies, 108

Interface Design, 106

Web Design, 102, 106

Parsons Undergraduate Viewbook  

The current Parsons undergraduate viewbook

Parsons Undergraduate Viewbook  

The current Parsons undergraduate viewbook