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Industry-sponsored project overview

Students Working in Ford Class

Nearly all of the projects that are done at the CDR are industry-sponsored. The CDR partners with a corporation or in some cases several, to create a problem statement that is the starting point for project that may last for a semester or much longer. Examples of projects that have been done recently can be seen in the Project Spotlight page. 

The primary objective for a sponsored project is to create a unique, high-quality educational opportunity for our students. 
Next to an internship, working with a sponsor on a project is perhaps the finest opportunity to experience high level critique and interaction students can have. There is no better way to prepare them for the professional settings they will experience once they graduate.

Another of the CDR's key objectives is to provide an opportunity for sponsor, school, faculty, and students to promote the value of good design and multidisciplinary collaboration. 

Industry-sponsored projects done at the CDR also provide a forum in which students can explore the design professions' various career paths. Projects help familiarize companies and students with each other, and allow sponsor liaisons the opportunity to meet our program’s best and brightest talent.

In addition to providing direct-expense support for the students, sponsored projects may also provide unrestricted funds for the general support of the Center. The ongoing project sponsorships we’ve established with large corporations also validate the importance of the CDR’s work, and have been crucial to developing and securing major gifts.

Sponsored projects have provided the majority of the publicity opportunities for Center for Design Research and our students. This media coverage is important in attracting prospective students and provides opportunities for students to have published work in their portfolios.


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