Art & Design Department
About the Program
We are an Interior Architecture and Design program accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA) with a balanced approach to the artistic and technical aspects of interior design. The philosophy of the interior architecture and design program at HU is to provide students with an education in design that builds fundamental skills, imparts comprehensive knowledge, and gives opportunities to implement these skills and knowledge through the creative and relevant interior design project experiences. Students are encouraged to develop an attitude of service and diversity toward others while cultivating a sense of wellbeing and sensitivity to the impact of design on individuals and the environment.
Harding University interior design students continue to receive awards from design competitions in multiple categories: residential, health care, commercial design, etc. Additionally, the Harding ASID student chapter actively engages in service and community projects and was recognized as the 2009 ASID South Central Chapter of the Year.
Careers in Interior Design
Interior design encompasses a variety of career and employment opportunities. Residential design can include remodeling, new construction, model homes, apartments and condominiums. Commercial design specialties expand to include office, health care, institutional, educational, as well as, hotels, restaurants, spas, and retail environments. Architecture and interior design firms, furniture and home furnishing stores, or specialized design firms such as yachts and private plane design employ many designers. Below are links with additional information concerning job outlook, interior design practice, income, and career stages.
Senior Thesis Project
The Senior Thesis project is rooted in research and addresses a social issue of the student's choosing. These comprehensive projects demonstrate creative and technical skills acquired by students throughout the program and culminate in a presentation and gallery exhibit. Projects have included renderings for the Haven Center's Behavioral Health and Education Center, the Common Ground Neighborhood Hub, Heart4Memphis's Christian Connection and Resource Center, a homeless center and the Wabasi Wellness Center.
Mission & Goals
The mission of the Interior Architecture and Design program at Harding University is to produce graduates deeply rooted in Christian values who are knowledgeable, creative, engaged professionals that encourage wellness and respect for individual diversity. This mission is carried out by dedicated, student-focused faculty who strive to embody these same qualities through a Christ-centered approach to mentoring, teaching, scholarship, and service.
- Christ-Like: To foster within students a global and diverse perspective of the human experience grounded in a respectful, Christ-like response to others.
- Knowledgeable: To prepare students for entry-level interior design practice and promote lifelong intellectual growth in the pursuit of innovative, environmental and researched design solutions.
- Creative: To inspire and provide a culture of creativity and critically diverse thinking grounded in the framework of Fine Arts, theory, and traditional design principles.
- Professional: To mentor and infuse professional, Christian behavior and work excellence in design practice, ethics and integrity, and business relationships.
- Engaged: To stimulate a passion and advocacy for the interior design profession through engagement in and introduction to industry organizations, career opportunities and community service.
- Wellness: To promote a culture of well-being framed within the context of a nurturing Christ in which students are able to thrive mentally, emotionally and physically.
The CIDA-accredited program prepares students for entry-level interior design practice, for advanced study, and to apply for membership in professional interior design organizations. The BFA in Interior Architecture and Design granted by Harding University meets the educational requirement for eligibility to sit for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification Examination (NCIDQ Exam). For more information about NCIDQ Exam eligibility visit www.cidq.org/paths.
Academic advising is a crucial part of getting the most from your time as an interior architecture and design major at Harding. Plan to schedule an appointment with one of the interior architecture and design advisors a minimum of two-weeks prior to registration week in both fall and spring semesters. Students must make sure to check for holds on their accounts that might delay registering for classes. Registering as early as each classification allows ensures that students get the best schedule. Classes fill up fast, so it is recommended that students register quickly.
For a list of requirements and courses for the Interior Design major visit the Academic Catalog.
Amy Cox, M.B.A., B.S., ASID, IDEC, NCIDQ® - Associate Professor of Art
Sarah Wilhoit, Ph.D., ASID, IDEC, NCIDQ® 022374 – Program Director, Associate Professor of Art
Retention, Graduation & Job Placement
Of the students that graduated in May and August of 2022, 100% were employed in the profession of Interior Design by October 2022.
Of the students who entered upper level courses, 83% of the class graduated in four years.
Of the freshmen, sophomores and juniors enrolled during the spring 2022 semester, 77% will be returning to the program in the fall of 2022. This is a 23% attrition rate.
In the past three years, one student applied for graduate school and was accepted into graduate school.
Students in this program graduate with a large portfolio. View the portfolio of some recent graduates to learn more about what students in the Interior Architecture and Design Program accomplish during their undergraduate studies.
B.A. Interior Design 2020 Alumna
B.A. Interior Design 2020 Alumnus
B.A. Interior Design 2019 Alumna