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Art Center College of Design | Pasadena, California | Learn to Create. Influence Change.

Transportation Design

“Our students have a keen interest in the important challenges facing all aspects of transportation and see these challenges as opportunities to utilize technology as a stimulus for creative and innovative design solutions.”

Stewart Reed, Chair

Degree: Bachelor of Science

The challenges to the automotive industry present tremendous opportunities for transportation designers. Art Center’s Transportation Design Department has long served as a catalyst for innovation and more than 60 years after its creation, our program continues to be the best educational environment for designers seeking transportation design careers.

Our curriculum emphasizes key topics such as sustainable mobility and the implications of brand and product life cycle, in addition to styling, comfort, safety and usability. Our students gain fluency in drawing and both physical and digital modeling skills, also developing an understanding of things such as vehicle architecture, materials and process, and aerodynamics. Exploring the balance between form and function, students develop the ability to create vehicle concepts with distinct personality and improved function.

While our department is best known for the influence our alumni have on automotive design, in recent years our program has taken a broader view of transportation, preparing students for careers in motorcycle, marine, aircraft, commercial transport, personal mobility and public transit design.

The creation of a vehicle is a team effort, and our students have opportunities to collaborate with colleagues in a range of disciplines through Transdisciplinary Studios. Also, our location in Southern California—close to more than 20 advanced automotive design studios as well as companies leading the emerging fields of new mobility and alternative energy—offers distinct advantages, including unique access to many professional designers who serve as part-time faculty and guest speakers, as well as opportunities for internships.

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