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​Environmental and Interior Design

This multidisciplinary program fosters the creation of humane, sustainable environments.

Two students collaborating on an environmental and interior design project.

Students in the major learn to practice sensitivity to the concerns of people, sustainable design philosophies, and an understanding of the business of design, while completing work experiences and collaborative projects in the community. Accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA) and ranked 8th in the nation by DesignIntelligence for environmental and interior design programs, the major provides a basis for the next generation of creative problem solvers and leaders in the various fields of environmental and interior design.

About VPA

Home to the visual and performing arts at Syracuse, VPA supports the creative process and professional development. The College is divided into seven areas: the School of Art; the Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies; the School of Design; the Department of Drama; the Rose, Jules R. and Stanford S. Setnor School of Music; the Department of Film and Media Arts; and the Department of Creative Arts Therapy.


Core coursework covers design concepts, art history, and sustainable designs. Sample courses include:

  • Design, Cultural Traditions and the Environment
  • Environmental Factors
  • History of Modern Design: 1850-Present
  • Textiles for Designers
  • Furniture and Light Workshop
  • Introduction to Visual Culture

View official major requirements.

Practical Experience

Take advantage of learning opportunities outside the classroom to supplement your coursework and develop your skills.

  • Enjoy the professional studio facilities, shared computer labs, printing lab, and fabrication lab at the Nancy Cantor Warehouse in downtown Syracuse.
  • Engage with an impressive array of internationally-known visiting designers.
  • Intern with notable firms and organizations such as Thom Filicia Interiors, Donghia, DRG Architects, Kate Spade, Whitehall Interiors, and the American Museum of Natural History.
  • Work closely with faculty on special projects in a studio environment similar to the professional design office experience.

Study Abroad

Build up your resume and broaden your perspective with a study abroad experience during your time at Syracuse. Consistently ranked among the top 25 international education providers in the U.S., Syracuse Abroad offers more than 100 programs in 60 countries. 

Environmental and interior design majors most often go abroad to Syracuse University centers in Florence and London.

Life After Syracuse University

With a degree in environmental and interior design, you can pursue career tracks such as:

  • Regional planner
  • Interior designer
  • Set designer
  • Landscape architect

Or pursue a graduate degree in business, collaborative design, or museum studies. Past graduates have continued their education at many of the most prestigious graduate schools in the U.S.