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Floss Barber, Philadelphia, PA

Anne Marchessault

MS Interior Architecture & Design 17

What are some of the rewarding aspects of your occupation and career?  

One of the most rewarding aspects of my job is seeing a client’s face light up when they feel like their vision for a project has been both understood and realized beyond their expectations by the design team. 

The most rewarding aspect of my occupation thus far has been returning to Drexel to teach a professional practice course to undergraduate interior design students. I really sought to make the class a comfortable space for the students to ask any questions they had about the profession and life after graduation, and I feel that they all gained confidence both in themselves and in their design knowledge prior to going into the field full time. 


What would you consider as your greatest achievement in this occupation?  

So far my greatest achievement is leading the design for a boutique hotel in Lancaster, PA, and working toward NCIDQ certification. 


What did you study for your undergraduate degree? Did it inform your choice of Interior Design as a career?  

I studied English and art history in undergrad, and went on to earn a law degree and work in the legal field for four years. I feel that all my prior education helped me learn how to analyze and articulate design conditions and concepts. The art history knowledge proves useful on a daily basis in interior design! 


Why did you choose this career?  

I chose this career because I had an underlying desire to make more of a visual impact on my surroundings. I realized I was not satisfied with my prior occupation because there was never a resulting tangible product to work toward. Interior design is both challenging in the creativity and resourcefulness required and satisfying in working with a team to realize a finished space. 


Why did you choose Drexel University’s Westphal College of Media Arts and Design over similar programs?  

I chose Westphal because of the staff and the resources. Touring the URBN Center at orientation I could feel the creative energy in the building, in large part due to the technological resources available and the integration of multiple design disciplines in one space. 


How did your time at Drexel University’s Westphal College of Media Arts and Design prepare you for your career?  

I had the space and encouragement to learn my individual design strengths and opportunity to test out ideas.  


Was our faculty helpful to you in making the transition to a career in interior design? Are you still in contact with them?  

Yes, I had very supportive and encouraging professors at Westphal, particularly during thesis in my last year, and we are still in touch. The faculty are very involved in the design community in Philadelphia and beyond. 


What advice would you give to someone considering returning to a Master’s program in interior design?  

Take the opportunity to speak with current and previous students to see if their excitement for the program resonates with you. I took a continuing education class in interior design before enrolling in the Masters program, and my love for that course made me realize I wanted to commit to the study of interior design full time.