Interior Design - Alumnae Profile: Mary Kathryn Washington
I was lucky enough to know when I was a senior in high school that that I wanted to become an interior designer. Knowing that Meredith had such a wonderful design program made my college decision even easier. The classes my freshman year made me even more certain.
The great part about the Meredith Design program is that they don’t focus on just one part of the interior design profession. Right out of school I worked for a high end residential firm and my classes on materials and textiles were very useful. Now, working at an architectural firm, my drafting, construction, and professional practices classes are what I look back on.”
Mary Kathryn Washington, ’04
Major: Interior Design with a minor in art
Career: Interior Designer, Skinner Lamm and Highsmith Architects, which has offices in Raleigh and Wilson, N.C. The firm’s clients are healthcare facilities, public schools and government agencies.
“I do millwork drawings, drafting, furniture selection and layout, and finish selections. I meet with clients often to find out what their interior needs are and then work with them throughout the project to make sure we are taking care of those needs.”
Rewards of the Job: “The most rewarding part of my job is making my client happy. If his/her needs are met and the end result looks like it did in my head from the beginning, then I have succeeded.”
Challenges: “Codes! There are so many building codes, fire codes, life safety codes, etc. that is sometimes hard to come up with great designs when you have so many rules to follow.”
Advice to Current Students: Listen, listen, listen.
“There is going to be some material that you might think you will never need, but you never know what type of job you will have. If you would have asked me in college if I would be doing commercial design [someday], I would have said no.”